Our Local Councils: Folkestone & Hythe District Council and Kent County Council 


Our Local Councils page will bring you information about the local area and provide you with the links to view documents that are relevant to you.

This page contains information on:

            Unlicensed Traders             Road/Footpath problems         Potholes



Bonfire smoke

Smoke from bonfires and burning rubbish contains irritating, sometimes poisonous substances. Even one bonfire can spoil the environment, and annoy neighbours by making their homes dirty.

What you can do

Shepway Council's leaflet "Nuisance bonfires" gives easy ways to dispose of rubbish instead of having a bonfire. For example:

If smoke from a neighbouring house or business is affecting your quality of life,  tell us by:

  • writing to Environmental Health, Folkestone & Hythe District Council, Civic Centre, Castle Hill Avenue, Folkestone CT20 2QY
  • calling 01303 858660 or 01303 221888 out of office hours 

Tell us as much as you can about:

  • how the problem affects you
  • how significant the problem is - how often it occurs, and how long it lasts

What the Council can do

If we decide the problem is causing a statutory nuisance:

  • we'll try to resolve the problem informally, by offering advice and guidance to those responsible
  • if that doesn't work, we can sometimes take action under the Environmental Services Act - which carries fines of up to £20,000

We can also declare a Smoke Control Area. This means that:

  • people can only use authorised fuels, or exempted furnaces and boilers
  • chimney smoke is not allowed, with only a few exceptions
  • people who don't comply can be fined up to £1,000 for each offence.


105 is the new number to call if you have a power cut. It’s free of charge and will put you through to your local electricity network operator who can give you help and advice

Many people don’t know they should contact their local electricity network operator if they have a power cut. They often mistakenly call the electricity supplier they pay their bills to.

That’s why the electricity network operators have introduced 105 – to give you an easy-to-remember number to call that will put you through to the local people who can help.

Customers who live in London, the South East and East of England can still call us on 0800 31 63 105, free from a mobile or landline phone.

For more information you can visit the 105 website

Pothole Reporting 

For the latest updates week-by-week, and to report a pothole, visit www.kent.gov.uk/potholeblitz.



 Doorstep Crime & Phone Crime

Loft Insulation

We have had reports of doorstep criminals targeting residents in the Ashford area for loft insulation work.

What happens

•Residents are cold-called
•The doorstep criminal claims to be from the Council
•The resident is offered a ‘free’ survey for loft insulation
•Once a price is mentioned by the criminal they then use pressure tactics including telling the resident their property value will decrease if they do not have the work done

Help keep your community safe. Report doorstep criminals as soon as you see them


 "BT" Phone Call

How it works:

•You receive an automated message saying they are BT.
•The message says you have a text message and to get the message ‘Press 1’.
•As the person reporting was not a BT customer they hung up the telephone.
•Immediately there was another automated call.
•The message thanked the caller for their payment of £500.
•To cancel this payment they had to press "1" again.

What to do:

•Do not respond to the call.
•Do not press 1.
•Hang up the phone.
•This scam appears to be trying to get your bank account details.
•Report the scam to Action Fraud 0300 123 2040 or online.
•Find out more here about scam BT calls or to report the scam to BT.
Please warn vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours.

Septic tank rules

If you have a septic tank that discharges directly to a surface water you will need to replace or upgrade your treatment system by 1 January 2020. Where properties with septic tanks that discharge directly to surface water are sold before 1 January 2020, responsibility for the replacement or upgrade of the existing treatment system should be addressed between the buyer and seller as a condition of sale.

If the Environment Agency finds evidence that your septic tank discharging to a surface water is causing pollution, you will need to replace or upgrade your system earlier than 1 January 2020. You will usually have to do this within 1 year, although this will be agreed on a case-by-case basis.

Click here to read more

kcc-logo.jpgTrees, hedges and vegetation overhanging the highway

Every year KCC Highways & Transportation receive numerous complaints regarding trees, hedges and other vegetation, which overhang the highway from private property. This can pose a number of problems for people trying to use the footways, especially if they are trying to pass with buggies, wheel chairs and scooters.  Please ensure that any trees and hedges that are bordering the Highway are maintained and cut back to your boundary. This will help us all keep the highway safe and prevent the need for KCC Highways & Transportation writing to you requesting that you cut back your vegetation. 

If the boundary of your property borders the footway, then please be aware that:

  •  The full width of the footway/pavement must be available for use by pedestrians.
  • As well, there must be a minimum height clearance over the footway/pavement of 2.1 metres / 7 feet for any vegetation.

 If the boundary of your property borders the carriageway, then please be aware that:

  •  If you have vegetation that overhangs into the road, there must be a minimum height clearance of 5 metres / 16 feet, to accommodate buses and HGV’s that may use the road.
  •  If your property is rural, then vegetation should be 0.45 metres / 1’6” feet behind the edge of the road and all signs need to be kept clear of foliage for at least 20 metres.

Also, please pay special attention to your trees, hedges and vegetation if your property is on or near a junction, and/or inside bend of the road, to maintain maximum visibility for road users.


Kent County Council Trading Standards is proud to announce their partnership with Checkatrade. 

Find a trader approved by KCC Trading Standards 

Noise Nuisance

If you are experiencing noise nuisance problems from noisy neighbours, alarms, barking dogs or businesses and building sites; the Folkestone & Hythe District Council wesbite has information and advice on what to do. Click here to visit their site



Clean Sweep Alert System

Kent Fire & Rescue have launched the clean sweep alert system – it’s safe and easy to use and you can sign up in seconds. It will send you a message to remind you to get your chimney cleaned and inspected if you haven’t already had it done yet. That way you can make sure it's free from debris and in good working order before you light it. This will help to prevent fires and structural damage to your property.

If you have a chimney, open fire, wood burner, Aga or other 'real flame' appliance, it's vital that you ensure it is properly installed and serviced by competent engineers, so you can safely curl up next to a warm, cosy fire throughout the colder winter months.

Don't take chances with safety, sign up for the free clean sweep alert and get your chimney and flues inspected and swept annually. 

Click here for tips to help avoid a fire.

Click here to sign up to the clean sweep alert system.


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