It may seem obvious but ownership of the parish finances is the domain of the council.

  • The clerk, if the Responsible Financial Officer, may be called upon to provide some of the information in a draft budget and may monitor the budget agreed by the council
  • However, as part of the budget setting process, it is the responsibility of the council to debate and decide what is included in the budget and approve the final version
  • Never forget that it is public money, care for it as if it were your own


This 60 second guide is for town and parish councillors, residents and clerks who wish to understand the basics of town or parish council budgeting.

The budget is the basis for the precept i.e. the tax on residents.


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Challenging working practices

Alternative choices and solutions


Operational risk


Ease of use



This guide is indicative and not definitive, if in doubt get someone else involved or seek professional advice.

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