Comments, complaints and compliments
Runnymede Borough Council recognises the importance of providing an excellent service to every member of our community. A core part of this is an open, responsive approach to feedback and complaints.
We recognise that, sometimes, we do not always meet the high standards we set ourselves. Your comments are important during these times as they help us to identify why things have not gone well and how we can improve in the future.
We regard complaints as an expression of dissatisfaction about a Council service (whether the service is provided directly by us or by one of our partners/contractors) which requires a response. If you feel something has gone wrong, we encourage you to try to resolve matters with the person you have been dealing with first. Your complaint will be dealt with fairly and impartially and as promptly as possible. We aim to respond fully to complaints within 10 working days of receipt by the relevant staff who will keep you updated if that isn't possible. Please note that in the current Covid 19 situation a significant number of our staff have been redeployed to supporting our most vulnerable residents. Therefore, all but the most urgent complaints can be subject to delay. If your complaint is urgent please let us know.
If you cannot find what you want to complain about please use our general feedback form which will be forwarded to the relevant Council Service but we urge you to please contact the service department (business centre) first.
Ourexplains what our residents should expect from us.
Appeals, 'report it' and service requests
We regard service requests to be different from complaints. Complaints and service requests are logged and reviewed accordingly to make sure our service delivery is of a high standard.
If you are making a service request for example to report a missed bin, please use the 'report it' tab at the top of this page where a number of service areas are covered. Please check the following list for different procedures to follow depending on what it is you want to do:
Council Tax banding appeal
Environmental Information Regulations Internal Review
Freedom of Information Internal Review
Homelessness and Housing Register appeals
Object to a Planning application
Parking Penalty Charge Notices
Planning Enforcement Request
Problems with neighbours
Representations and Reviews under the Licensing Act 2003
If you wish to appeal against a Statutory notice or decision, details of how to appeal should be included on the notice you received. If not, please contact the relevant Council Service who will be able to help you.
Complaints and the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman
When we have completed our consideration of your complaint we will advise you that this is our final position, based on the information we have.
You can now ask the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (the Ombudsman) to review your complaint. You usually have up to 12 months to do this, starting from the date you first knew about the matter you complained about, not from the date of our communication to you. The Ombudsman will normally only consider complaints made within that time but can decide to look at older complaints if there is a good reason to do so. The Ombudsman looks at individual complaints about councils, all adult social care providers (including care homes and home care agencies) and some other organisations providing local public services. The Ombudsman investigates matters fairly and impartially and is free to use. There are some matters the Ombudsman cannot or will not investigate. In these cases they will explain clearly the reason for their decision. The Ombudsman's contact details are below. You will need to provide them with a copy of our last communication to you, and our earlier responses to you, so they can consider your complaint.
Telephone: 0300 061 0614, Opening hours: Monday to Friday - 10am to 4pm (except public holidays) Website: www.lgo.org.uk
The Housing Ombudsman Service (HOS) will look at housing related complaints. Full details about the process can be found on the HOS website at www.housing-ombudsman.org.uk. Alternatively, you can contact the HOS on 0300 111 3000
Please note that a council does not need the complainant's consent to share information with the Ombudsman when responding to its enquiries about a complaint. This is because the statutory powers given to the Ombudsman by The Local Government Act 1974 enables them to receive any information which is relevant to the case investigation, no matter from whom. The GDPR does not require consent when an organisation is carrying out a statutory function.
Complaints about councils' nationality checking services can also be directed to the Office of the Immigration Service.
The vast majority of complaints can be resolved quickly, through our complaints procedure or through investigation by the Ombudsman once they have been through our internal complaints procedure. However, a small number of people may still be dissatisfied with the outcome of this process, or with the process itself, and continue pursuing the matter. If we consider a persistent complaint of this kind to be unreasonable, we'll follow ourprocedure for such matters. We review our procedures regularly to make sure they are up to date and working properly.
Complaints and Compliments about Councillors
Complaints against Councillors and co-opted Members must be referred to the Council's Monitoring Officer, Mario Leo.
If you have been impressed by the services we have provided for you or if you feel any of our staff have excelled in their duties, we would like to hear from you. Please use our general feedback form and we will pass your comments to the people responsible so that they will know you appreciate their efforts. You can also use this form to make suggestions for improving the way we work.
We require your personal data in order to record and consider your complaints and compliments and to contact you. This is a public task which we have a duty to fulfil. We will only share your information if it is necessary, for resolving your complaint or we deemed the sharing compatible with the purpose your information was provided. We will not further share your information without your consent. Your information will be kept securely for 4 years (complaints) and 2 years (compliments) and then destroyed securely.
Complaints and compliments are regularly reported to the Standards and Audit Committee but any personal information is redacted. The Committee is interested in all the feedback we get, positive and negative so that trends can be identified, lessons learned and good practice shared.
For further details on how your personal information will be used please see our