We have a straightforward formal procedure for dealing with complaints.
If you are dissatisfied with a service we have provided, please contact the relevant department to discuss your concerns. We ask that you do this before making a formal complaint. This is because we would like to put things right as quickly as possible and may be be to do so if you simply explain your concerns to us. Sometimes, we are unable to do what our customers want, perhaps because of the law, but if you contact us at least we can explain the reason(s) for this to you.
However, If you have already contacted us before about an issue and we have not resolved it, you may wish to make a formal complaint.
A complaint is not an enquiry or request for us to do a task or service. A complaint tells us things that have gone wrong, or that you are unhappy with the service you have received and why you are unhappy.
The Local Government Ombudsman said that: "A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction, by one or more members of the public about the Council's action or lack of action or about the standard of a service, whether the action was taken or the service provided by the council itself or a person or body acting on behalf of the council."
A complaint could relate, for example, to -
- The standard of service provided.
- Whether the service met your needs.
- The time taken to provide the service.
- Not receiving the requested or expected service
- The way you were treated.
- Equality of opportunity.
Our complaints procedure should not be used to ask us to do something, such as reporting anti social behaviour, graffiti or litter. This should be done by simply contacting us to make a service request. Our complaints procedure should also not be used to request information, for decisions against which there is a right of appeal (either within the Council or to an independent tribunal) or because you disagree with the law.
Please contact us if you would like more information on our complaints procedure. Complaints, when made appropriately, allow us to monitor customer satisfaction, improve our service and put things right.
Our formal complaint procedure has two steps. Step One is a complaint to the head of the relevant department, or nominated officer. Please use the complaint form available on the link to the right of this page, which shows all the information we need. However, you can also write to us, or email your complaint details. If you would prefer a printed complaint form, please contact us to request one, or pick one up from one of our offices. When we receive the form we will send you an acknowledgement letter and investigate the complaint. We aim to reply in full within 15 working days. If we cannot reply within 15 working days, we will keep you informed on the progress of your complaint. If you are not satisfied with our response, you can progress the matter to Step Two by writing to our Managing Director, who will acknowledge your complaint and respond within 15 working days, or keep you informed of progress.
If, after receiving our Managing Director's reply, you are still dissatisfied you can contact the Local Government Ombudsman. We will send you information on how to do this with our Managing Director's reply. If you would like to know more, please click on the link to the Office of the Local Government Ombudsman's website, on the right of this page.
The Local Government Ombudsman will not normally consider your complaint unless we have first had the opportunity to resolve the matter.