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Your Council Tax

For the year 2024/25

Find out what your Council Tax pays for and how your bill is calculated.

Most of the Council Tax we collect from you is used for services that are provided by Kent County Council, Kent Police and Crime Commissioner and Kent Fire and Rescue Service plus some is used by the parish and town councils.

Only 9% of what you pay is used to fund borough council services, which on average is 56p per day.

Here is a breakdown of each £ collected and where it goes

  • Kent Police 12p
  • Parishes 3p
  • Kent Fire and Rescue Service 4p
  • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council 9p
  • Kent County Council 72p

What you get for 56p a day

  • Cleaner streets
  • Recycling and waste collection
  • Community safety and CCTV
  • Parks and play areas
  • Leisure centres and sports activities
  • Summer events and festivals
  • Planning and building control
  • Environmental, health and safety inspections
  • Food hygiene ratings for local food businesses
  • Assembly Hall Theatre
  • Online services – from paying bills to reporting
  • Fly-tipping removal
  • The Amelia Scott cultural centre
  • Running elections
  • Housing needs service
  • Licensing of taxis and premises
  • Ice rink
  • Community grants

Find out about the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner precept increases for 2024/25 on the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner website (opens in a new window).

Find out about the Kent Fire and Rescue Service increases for 2024/25 on the Kent Fire and Rescue Service website (opens in a new window).

Referendum Limits

Although Council Tax is set locally by democratically elected local members at a public meeting of Full Council the Secretary of State has the power to set a limit above which a referendum must he held. For 2024/25 the limits allowed Kent County Council to increase their Council Tax by up to 5 per cent, comprising a core 3 per cent plus an extra 2 per cent provided this is attributable to funding adult social care.

The Secretary of State made an offer to adult social care authorities. “Adult social care authorities” are local authorities which have functions under Part 1 of the Care Act 2014, namely county councils in England, district councils for an area in England for which there is no county council, London borough councils, the Common Council of the City of London and the Council of the Isles of Scilly.

The offer was the option of an adult social care authority being able to charge an additional “precept” on its Council Tax without holding a referendum, to assist the authority in meeting its expenditure on adult social care from the financial year 2016-17.

Kent Police and Crime Commissioner have a limit of £13 which is 5.3 per cent increase over the previous year.

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council (TWBC) has a limit of 3 per cent increase over the previous year.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service has a limit of 3 per cent increase over the previous year. There are no set limits of increasing Council Tax for parish and town councils.

The table below summarises, for each Council Tax band, the amount of Council Tax allocated to each of the organisations described above.

Kent County Council
(excl. Social Care Precept)
Kent County Council (incl. Social Care Precept)* Tunbridge Wells Borough Council Kent Police and Crime Commissioner Kent Fire and Rescue Service Total Council Tax (excluding Special Expenses and parish precepts)

This section gives you a breakdown of our income and expenditure.

In line with the rest of local government, Tunbridge Wells Borough Council’s financial position remains challenging with inflation ranging from 5 to 10 per cent pushing up expenditure, while income is relatively fixed at 3 per cent, creating a widening budget gap. The level of Council Tax increase reflects the need to deliver the council’s priorities and statutory services, and to strike the right balance with fees and charges and Council Tax payers.

After over a decade of austerity and with negligible levels of Revenue Support Grant from the Government, the council has had to operate on a very lean base. The council has successfully rebalanced its finances following the impact of the pandemic without the need to draw on reserves.

The Government has developed a universal benchmark indicator called ‘Spending Power’ to measure the revenue available to provide local services. Tunbridge Wells Borough Council has one of the lowest levels of Spending Power in Kent at just £282 per household and therefore must continue to reconsider the range and quality of services it must provide and those it chooses to provide.

The average general Council Tax for a Band D property will be £146.23 for 2024/25 across the borough.

The borough council also provides certain services in Capel, Southborough, Royal Tunbridge Wells and Rusthall for the benefit of those residents for which the council levies a ‘special expenses’ charge only on Council Tax payers in those respective areas. This expenditure is included in the council’s revenue budget.





Tax Rate
Band D

Capel 0 2 2 2.40
Royal Tunbridge Wells 2,4641142,458 126.95
Rusthall 1091011373.46
Southborough 0 2726 6.11




Tax Rate
Band D

Capel 0 2 2 2.47
Royal Tunbridge Wells 2,5741232,697130.82
Rusthall 11211 12375.70
Southborough 0 28 286.29

The amount of Council Tax you pay will vary where Parish and Town Councils have issued a precept to the borough council.


Tax Rate Band
D dwelling


Tax Rate Band
D dwelling

Benenden 46,000 48.76 49,750 51.95
Bidborough 71,970 128.58 71,970 127.84
Brenchley and Matfield 132,585 87.97 140,000 90.47
Capel 79,083 83.04 87,500 91.11
Cranbrook and Sissinghurst 378,153 139.34 386,712 139.35
Frittenden 17,000 41.76 17,000 41.17
Goudhurst 219,800 160.34 227,000 168.14
Hawkhurst 254,070 119.06 256,113 119.21
Horsmonden 101,165 95.65 125,510 114.41
Lamberhurst 59,500 79.46 62,475 83.09
Paddock Wood 757,956 228.50 861,559 233.17
Pembury 247,504 106.19 264,564 113
Rusthall 85,000 52.52 95,000 58.55
Sandhurst 85,850 139.06 94,435 151.66
Southborough 651,847 148.49 690,533 155.69
Speldhurst 179,100 73.81 225,680 91.72

Click here for parish council contact details and town budget information (opens in a new window)

Parish and Town Precepts (exceeding £140,000)

Cranbrook and Sissinghurst

2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Street Lighting 19 19 19 19
Recreation 101 99 125 101
Other Services 321 260 348 272
Transfer to/(from) reserves     (5)
Total 441378492387


2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Street Lighting     
Recreation 61 45 81 69
Other Services 185 185 207 199
Transfer to/(from) reserves   (10)   (40)
Total 246220288228


2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Street Lighting 13 13 11 11
Recreation 99 87 42 30
Other Services 272 214 234 215
Transfer to/(from) reserves   (60)   
Total 384254287256

Paddock Wood

2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Street Lighting 2 2 2 2
Recreation 465 445 561 534
Other Services 326 311 344 325
Transfer to/(from) reserves     
Total 793758907861


2023/24 Gross Spending £000's  * 2023/24 Net Spending £000's  * 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Street Lighting 5 5 5 5
Recreation 133 128 129 123
Other Services 157 107 162 124
Transfer to/(from) reserves   8   13
Total 295248296265

* -  restated information.


2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Recreation 437 257 470 418
Other Services 464 395 468 272
Transfer to/(from) reserves     
Total 901652938690


2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's 2024/25 Gross Spending £000's 2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Recreation 30 29 35 34
Other Services 190 173 192 192
Transfer to/(from) reserves   (23)   
Total 220179227226
2023/24 Spending £000's 2023/24 Per Head £2024/25 Spending £000's2024/25 Per Head £
Tunbridge Wells BC Budget (Net) 14,590126.5415,156131.45
Town and Parish Precepts 3,36729.203,65731.72
Financed by Government Grants 4,88342.355,14644.63
Financed by Collection Fund Surplus/(deficit) 2482.15870.75
Financed by Council Tax 12,826111.2413,580117.78

Summary of Revenue Budget

These figures exclude the re-allocation of overhead costs, including support service costs, departmental administrative costs and fixed asset depreciation charges to front line services. The ‘Other Services’ heading includes corporate management and a contingency provision.

2023/24 Gross Spending £000's 2023/24 Income £000's 2023/24 Net Spending £000's2024/25 Gross Spending £000's2024/25 Income £000's2024/25 Net Spending £000's
Financial Services 6,674-6,839-1656,175-7,207-1,302
Shared Services 27,308-25,0872,22127,329-24,9992,330
Housing, Health and Environment 14,007-7,4606,54714,745-8,2396,506
Economic Development 1,785-1,4093762,156-1,569587
Planning and Building Control 2,802-1,7211,0812,969-1,8061,163
Other Services 10,556-3,8206,73611,750-4,417-7,333
Budget sub-total63,132-46,33616,79665,124-48,23716,887
Capital Adjustments 277 277325 325
Interest  -1,540-1,540 -2,056-2,056
Transfer to/(from) Reserves  -943-943  0
Net budget requirement63,409-48,81914,59065,449-50,29315,156

Your bill will tell you what band you are in and how much you need to pay. Council Tax is calculated based on your band and the area of the borough you live in.

2024/25 charges

ParishBand ABand BBand CBand DBand EBand FBand GBand H
Brenchley & Matfield£1462.39£1706.12£1949.85£2193.58£2681.04£3168.50£3655.97£4387.16
Cranbrook & Sissinghurst£1494.98£1744.13£1993.30£2242.46£2740.79£3239.10£3737.44£4484.92
Paddock Wood£1557.53£1817.10£2076.69£2336.28£2855.46£3374.62£3893.81£4672.56
Royal Tunbridge Wells£1489.29£1737.50£1985.71£2233.93£2730.36£3226.78£3723.22£4467.86

Check your band

12 monthly payments

Council Tax is normally spread over 10 monthly instalments. If you wish to pay your bill over 12 monthly instalments please see our change your bill frequency page.

Direct Debit

Paying by secure Direct Debit is the simplest and easiest way to pay your bill.

  • you can pay over 10 or 12 monthly instalments, pay the full amount in one go or pay half yearly
  • sign up online and choose either the 1st or 15th of each month to make your payment
  • you will need your bank details and your Council Tax account number

Set up a Direct Debit


You can pay your Council Tax securely through our online payments site.

To make a payment online you will need:

  • a debit or credit card (Visa and Mastercard only)
  • your nine digit Council Tax account number

Pay online

Telephone payments

Payments can be made securely on our automated telephone payment line.

Telephone: 0800 023 7086

Please follow the prompts to make your payment. You will be given a transaction number when your payment is successfully completed.

Bank transfer or standing order

You can make payment through your own online banking by transferring payment to the Council's account or by setting up a regular standing order.

Please ensure you quote your nine digit Council Tax account number on all payments.

Our bank details are:

Bank: Lloyds Bank
Account name: Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Sort Code: 30-00-02
Account Number: 01396914 
IBAN: GB02LOYD30000201396914

Cash payments

Cash payments can be made using the payment kiosk at The Amelia Scott in Tunbridge Wells.

Allocation of payments

If you have outstanding Council Tax arrears for a previous year, and your payment does not match the amount outstanding on the current year, your payment may be allocated towards the arrears rather than where you intend. You will need to contact us to let us know which year your payment is for.

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council facts and figures for 2023:

  • Our Housing team worked with partners to prevent around 165 households from becoming homeless over the last year and helped 53 homeless households to secure suitable accommodation.
  • The Bereavement Services team at the Kent and Sussex Crematorium supported over 2,000 families with bereavement services.
  • In Planning and Building Control we:
    • dealt with over 2,963 planning applications in 2023
    • received 517 pre-applications
    • processed 513 applications for works to Protected Tree
    • processed 182 applications for works to a Listed Building
  • At the Assembly Hall Theatre we sold 92,849 tickets for shows in 2023.
  • Our Community Safety and Support team has continued to maintain and monitor 43 CCTV cameras across the borough. The CCTV control room covers our Kent Police area and works very closely with Shopsafe and the Pubwatch Business Crime Reduction Partnership.
  • At The Amelia Scott we have welcomed over one million visitors since opening in April 2022, that's around 1,000 visitors a day.
  • We had over 4.8 million page views on our website and sent over 630,000 weekly emails to subscribers.
  • We delivered over 220,000 copies of Local Magazine to households in the borough.
  • The borough supports a wide network of biodiversity sites, including 10 sites of special scientific interest, 60 local wildlife sites, 16 sites of local nature conservation value, 13 roadside nature reserves and four local nature reserves.
  • Tunbridge Wells borough has just under 90,000 electors living in around 50,000 properties.