In England alone there are over 9,000 parish councils and town councils. They are the tier of Local Government, which are closest to the people.
Each parish and town council have a limited amount of duties, as they are local authorities. With agreement of the district council or county council, if they decide to use them, the parish and town council have wide powers. These are certain functions normally carried out by those councils.
Parish and town councils should maintain a close relationship with the local community. The public are encouraged to be observers at the council meetings, as they are obliged to arrange at least one meeting for the parish or town council each year. Local electors may attend as they may raise issues of concern.