Newly analysed data shows that North Herts Council is the least complained about council - on district and borough level - in Hertfordshire. 

Between 2016 and 2022, NHDC received 7.3 complaints per 10,000 people, with 48 per cent of complaints upheld – meaning the complaint was at least partly valid. 

This made it the least complained about district or borough council of the nine that were analysed. Every council was included in the data except East Herts Council.

The Comet: Table showing the most complained about councils in HertsTable showing the most complained about councils in Herts (Image:

Stevenage Borough Council was the second least complained about district or borough council, with 9.8 complaints per 10,000 people. However, it had the highest rate of upheld complaints at 62.5 per cent. 

Herts County Council received 6.6 complaints per 10,000 people across the period, lower than any borough or district council, but with almost 68 per cent upheld, higher than any district or borough council. 

The analysis also shows how the number of complaints received by councils has changed from 2017-19 to 2020-22.

The Comet: Table showing how the number of complaints received by councils changed from 2017-19 to 2020-22Table showing how the number of complaints received by councils changed from 2017-19 to 2020-22 (Image:

SBC was the only council in Herts to see an increase, of nearly six per cent, while the number of complaints lodged with NHDC fell by 10.5 per cent.

There was also a 14 per cent decrease in the number of complaints directed to HCC. 

The data was provided by the Local Government Ombudsman and analysed by, and is available in full here

Cllr Elizabeth Dennis-Harburg, leader of NHDC, said: “We take great pride in the services we provide to people in North Herts and we’re pleased that the number of complaints we receive as a council remains low. 

“We have a transparent and robust complaints policy that actively encourages people to provide us with feedback, and we’re satisfied our complaints policy allows people to raise issues of concern with us.   

“In October this year we updated our 3C’s (comments, compliments and complaints) policy to ensure the council and communities we serve know how to access help, and that a safe and compassionate system to deal with complaints is in place.” 

A spokesperson for SBC said: “We take all complaints very seriously.  We provide and manage council homes and a wider range of services than many others in the region. 

“Although there has been an increase in the number of complaints, the council has the third fewest complaints per 10k of population and while it may seem that SBC has a high percentage of upheld complaints from the LGSCO, there were in fact only two cases investigated in the previous year. 

“We are currently in the process of reviewing and implementing a new complaints policy and monitoring platform to help us learn from individual cases, using the feedback received from our residents to help us continually improve the services we offer.” 

A spokesperson for HCC said: “We welcome feedback from residents and the annual statistics show that, considering the number of people who use our services every day, we receive relatively few complaints. 

“We do take all complaints seriously, and where we’ve been at fault we work to understand why something has happened, how we can put it right and how we can prevent it happening again.”