PEOPLE living in two parts of Worcester are going to be paying more council tax than expected after an administrative cock-up.

The error means bills for householders in St Peter's and Warndon Villages will be slightly higher than first thought from April.

The average band D bill for homes in Warndon will be £1.01 more than first stated for the whole of 2014/15, while in St Peter's it will be 66p over the entire year.

The city council has apologised, saying due to legal reasons it is now too late to change the bills back.

Lesley Meagher, director of resources, said: “On behalf of Worcester City Council, I would like to apologise to the parishes and their residents for this error.

"The parish councils could compensate their residents in 2015/16 if they choose to raise a lower amount through council tax when they come to consider their budgets."

It means the actual knock-on affect is that St Peter’s Parish Council announced a two per cent increase in their element of a Band D Council Tax bill, but that has actually risen by six per cent.

Warndon Parish Council agreed a per cent rise, but the rise in practice is actually 11 per cent.

For the current 2013/14 financial year the Government replaced council tax benefit with council tax support, which meant that town halls received a 10 per cent fall in income from actual bills.

The Government provided a grant scheme to compensate for the loss of money, and it is the role of the local authority that sends out the bills – in this case the city council – to pass on the right proportion of that grant to parish councils.

When the 2013/14 budgets were being prepared the city council did not make a distinction to the two parishes about which parts of its income were the precept – the amount the parishes receive from council tax bills – and which parts were the grant.

Councillor Roger Knight, who represents St Peter's, said: "I would expect to see a reduction made next year to accurately reflect what's happened."

The mistake means St Peter’s Parish Council will receive £3,227 more than expected this year and Warndon Parish Council will receive an extra £1,168.