BRIDPORT town councillors voted to balance their budget for next year – which means raising council tax by 8.73 per cent.

That equates to an extra 25p a week for band D tax payers who will pay a total of £161.79 for town council services – an increase of £12.99 a year.

Councillors on the finance and general purposes committee had three options – to charge an extra 18p a week and go into the red by £10,000, to break even or to increase tax by 32p a week and have a surplus of £10,000.

Town council finance manager Paul Fuszard said grants given to West Dorset District Council by central government to pass on to the town council had been reduced by more than £6,000 from £58,000 last year to £52,000 this year.