Terms and conditions for petitions

What is allowed in your petition to Reigate & Banstead Borough Council.

Who can submit a petition?

Anyone who lives, works or studies in Surrey may create and submit a petition to Reigate & Banstead Borough Council.

Petitions must include

The petition must refer to a matter that is relevant to the functions of the Council. Petitions submitted to the Council must include:

  • a clear and concise statement covering the subject of the petition
  • a statement about what action the petitioners wish the Council to take
  • the name and address and signature of any person supporting the petition (although only a name will be published on the website).

Signatures needed

The way in which we respond to a petition will depend on the number of signatures:

Number of signatories Response
Less than 20 Response from Officer (treated as standard correspondence).
20 - 199 Response from relevant Member of the Executive
At least 200 Referred to the Executive
At least 400 Debated at a meeting of the full Council

Not allowed

A petition will not be accepted where:

  • It is considered to be vexatious, abusive or otherwise inappropriate. If a petition does not follow the guidelines set out above, the Council may decide not to do anything further with it. In that case, we will write to you to explain the reasons.
  • It refers to a development plan, specific planning or right of way matter.
  • It refers to a decision for which there is an existing right of appeal, such as council tax banding and non-domestic rates, or alternative procedure.
  • It is a duplicate or near duplicate of a similar petition received or submitted within the last six months.

Further information on all these procedures and how you can express your views is available on the Planning meetings, Licensing applications pages or by contacting Democratic Services.

The information in a petition must be submitted in good faith. In order for the petition service to comply with the law, you must not include: 

  • Party political material. Please note, this does not mean it is not permissible to petition on controversial issues. For example, this party political petition would not be permitted: "We petition the Council to change the Conservative Cabinet's policy on education", but this non-party political version would be: "We petition the Council to change their policy on education".
  • potentially libelous, false, or defamatory statements;
  • information which may be protected by an injunction or court order (for example, the identities of children in custody disputes);
  • material which is potentially confidential, commercially sensitive, or which may cause personal distress or loss;
  • any commercial endorsement, promotion of any product, service or publication;
  • the names of individual officials of public bodies, unless they are part of the senior management of those organisations;
  • the names of family members of elected representatives or officials of public bodies;
  • the names of individuals, or information where they may be identified, in relation to criminal accusations;
  • language which is offensive, intemperate, or provocative. This not only includes obvious swear words and insults, but any language to which people reading it could reasonably take offence (we believe it is possible to petition for anything, no matter how radical, politely).

We reserve the right to reject:

  • petitions that are similar to and/or overlap with an existing petition or petitions;
  • petitions which ask for things outside the remit or powers of the Council
  • statements that don't actually request any action - ideally start the title of your petition with a verb;
  • wording that is impossible to understand;
  • statements that amount to advertisements;
  • petitions which are intended to be humorous, or which have no point about Council policy (however witty these are, it is not appropriate to use a publicly-funded website for purely frivolous purposes);
  • issues for which an e-petition is not the appropriate channel (for example, correspondence about a personal issue);
  • Freedom of Information requests. This is not the right channel for FOI requests; information about the appropriate procedure can be found on our Freedom of Information page.

We will strive to ensure that petitions that do not meet our criteria are not accepted, but where a petition is accepted which contains misleading information we reserve the right to post an interim response to highlight this point to anyone visiting to sign the petition.

See also

Further details of the process for submitting, receiving and responding to petitions are set out in the step-by-step guide and the:

If you are ready you can Create or sign an e-petition now.