COMPLAINTS about a range of problems at Bracknell Forest Council (BFC) increased last year - but the authority had the fewest issues from all Berkshire councils.

The Local Government Ombudsman deals with complaints made by residents about a range of grievances, including social care issues, planning disputes and housing arguments.

BFC saw 26 complaints made against it last year, up from 21 the year before and 23 the year before that.

READ MORE: Full guide of general election candidates

Most of the grievances were about adult social care or children’s services issues, totalling 17 complaints in total.

Environmental issues saw six complaints and planning problems led to three concerns.

Only one of these grievances was upheld.

This complaint saw the LGO demand BFC apologise to the family of an autistic boy after bosses wrongly refused to pay for his home to school transport.

Bracknell News:

The watchdog claimed this refusal meant other children may have been “similarly affected” as the council had since identified a number of other students who could be eligible for the provision.

Despite the increase in complaints against Bracknell Forest, the authority received the fewest complaints from all six Berkshire borough councils.

PICTURES: Dogs from local polling stations

Neighbouring authority Wokingham Borough Council saw 45 complaints come its way, with ten of these being upheld.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead had 44 grievances and twelve of these were upheld.

Bracknell News:

A report produced for BFC suggests the LGO has “moved away from a simplistic focus” on the number of complaints to a focus on the improvements that can be achieved through making recommended changes.

Writing in his latest report of the council’s business, Chief Executive Timothy Wheadon commented on the latest increase in complaints from earlier this year.

He said: “The quarter has seen an increase in the number of complaints that have been taken up by the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO).

READ MORE: This is why cemetery bosses want to introduce cremations without funerals

“At the same time the LGO has been taking a more combative approach and the time taken to respond is increasingly significant.”

The council's top team is set to discuss the figures at a meeting of the executive next week.