Parish or town councils are the most local level of government in England.

They are independent of other levels of local government, such as Borough and County Council, however they maintain a close working relationship with both. The powers of Parishes vary depending on how large and how active they are. Some meet infrequently (but at least four times a year, including one public meeting) and are responsible for very few matters. Other, larger, parishes undertake many duties such as street lighting, managing cemeteries, allotments, commons, village halls, war memorials and markets.

Parish Councillors are not paid and have to abide by a local government code of conduct and declare their financial interests in the parish. Councillors must also declare a personal or prejudicial interest in any matter under discussion at a parish council meeting.