THE COUNCIL tax paid by Trowbridge residents could rise by up to 20 per cent from April as the town council looks to take on more services.

Currently, band D properties in the county town pay £167.46 per year as part of the overall council tax bill.

In his New Year update, town council leader Stewart Palmen says plans are in place to raise the amount paid to £200.10 from April 2022 – a rise of 19.49 per cent.

These proposals would equate to a rise of £32.64 across the year.

However, the plan is to hold the precept at this level until 2025.

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Cllr Palmen said the rise is to cover the costs of “making Trowbridge a greener, more vibrant and more active town”.

Outlined in the town council’s 2021/25 strategy were three key elements to realising this aspiration.

The first was the completion of the all-weather pitches for Doric Park; the cost of which is likely to rise due to the increased costs of building materials and labour.

Second was creating a green Trowbridge, where the town council pledged to take control of green spaces and street cleaning from Wiltshire Council.

Lastly, was it continuing to progress new markets and businesses – including support for the Future High Street Fund.

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“Taking over full responsibility from Wiltshire Council for services that really affect the town will enable us to make Trowbridge the County Town that Wiltshire deserves, with better green areas, more tree planting and waste and litter dealt with promptly,” he added.

“Currently Wiltshire Council contract out this activity but when we take over in late 2022 we are considering that we will take all these activities ‘in-house’ under our own management, with our own workforce.

“This has the advantage of us being in direct control of our costs and also gives us a lot more flexibility to respond as required to what needs doing in the town rather than limiting the actions to those that have been spelt out in a rigid contract.”

Cllr Palmen continued that the proposed increase is lower than the Wiltshire average and below that of other towns such as Chippenham, Warminster, Westbury and Bradford on Avon.

Full council is set to discuss the precept changes on Tuesday, January 18, 2022.