Harwich Town Council succeeded Harwich Borough Council during local government re-organisation in 1974.
The Council is statutorily responsible for the provision and administration of allotment land, and is the administrative body for the putting green and croquet lawn in the leisure area of the town.
Buildings behind the Magistrates Court (previously known as The Hill School) were purchased by the Council in 1993 and developed for community use, and currently these buildings are let to various community and leisure organisations.
Harwich Town Council consists of 16 councillors who are elected every four years. The Chairman of the Council (The Town Mayor) and the Deputy Mayor are elected in May annually by their colleagues, with the Deputy Mayor succeeding The Mayor.
At present six town Councillors also serve as representatives for Harwich on the Tendring District Council and one on Essex County Council.
The Full Council meets once every six weeks, with a Planning Committee meeting being held every three weeks. At this meeting recommendations on Town Planning Applications are made to Tendring District Council who are the Planning Authority for Harwich. Other Committee meetings are held at approximately two month intervals throughout the year.
Allotments Committee – To oversee the management of allotment land
Finance and General Purposes Committee – to oversee issues relating to finance, staffing, security and general running of the Council.
Environment and Highways Committee – to oversee issues relating to the environment and highways, as well as tree planting, and to liaise with the relevant authorities.
Council administration takes place at The Guildhall where four members of staff are employed :
Clerk to the Council and Responsible Financial Officer – Ms Lucy Ballard
Assistant Clerk – Mrs Michelle Townsend
Estates Supervisor – Mr Peter Barrenger
Administrative Assistant (Apprentice) – Miss Briony Burrows