We live in a fantastic area where you can enjoy nature, lakes, trails, community events etc. Everyone should be able to enjoy themselves and not be negatively impacted by nuisance or disrespectful behaviour.

"What you Need to Know"

Before registering a complaint regarding a By-law or Property Standards matter, it is important to understand the rules surrounding various activities/By-laws:

 Open Air Burning
  • There is no open air burning during a Burn Ban - notice of a Burn Ban will be posted on the Selwyn Township website.
  • Fires must be supervised by an adult at all times, attended at all times and water must be available.
  • Fires must be fully extinguished.
  • Smoke cannot disrupt neighbouring properties.
  • No open air burning in ‘built-up’ areas including the Villages of Lakefield and Bridgenorth, Hamlets of Ennismore, Young’s Point and Woodland Acres.
  • In other areas, you can only have a fire if the container is located 100 feet (30 m) from a building, structure, etc.
  • Fire pits cannot exceed 2 feet (61 cm) in diameter.


  • Excessive noise disturbs your neighbours, particularly over waterbodies where the noise carries.
  • Noise from loud music, yelling, shouting or pets barking disturbs your neighbours – Be Respectful!
  • Be a good neighbour and remember you can be charged at any time of the day in the event you are creating noise that is disruptive to others.


  • Fireworks at individual properties can generate unwanted noise, and disturb pets and wild life.
  • Fireworks in built-up areas can be dangerous – why take a risk?
  • There are many public Fireworks displays. Watch these displays. They are free!


  • All pets must be under the care and control of the owners and they cannot roam at large onto other properties.
  • Keep pets on a leash or tether.
  • Stoop and Scoop, your pet’s waste is your responsibility.

Speeding/Careless Driving/Parking


  • All parking should occur entirely on your property (no parking on grass).
  • If you need to park on the road do not block your neighbour’s entrance, park on one-side of the road only and make sure the parking is temporary. The road is not a permanent parking solution.
  • Do not park where No Parking zones are designated.

Speeding/Careless Driving (emergency)

  • Residents that witness speeding/careless driving that is posing an immediate threat to the public are asked to contact 9-1-1.

Speeding/Careless Driving (non-emergency)

  • Residents can contact the Police directly to report a non-emergency incident:
    • Peterborough Police Service - Village of Lakefield
      Tel: 705-876-1122
      Online Reporting Form

    • Peterborough County OPP - Smith & Ennismore Wards
      Tel: 1-888-310-1122
      Use the ROAD WATCH© Online Reporting Form to report a non-emergency incident, such as:

      • Speeding
      • Driving in a Careless Manner
      • Disobeying Stop Signs
      • Disobeying Red Lights
      • Talking & Texting on a Mobile Device
      • Unsafe Lane Change
      • Tailgating
      • Road Rage
      • Failing to Stop for a School Bus
      • Following Too Close

Property Standards

Sets out the minimum standards for building and property maintenance within the municipality and is intended to outline the reasonable maintenance and upkeep of yards, buildings and properties.

  • Grass is not to exceed 6 inches (15 cm) in height.
  • Garbage and recycling are to be properly contained in containers to avoid attracting nuisance animals and generating odour etc.
  • The Township has curbside garbage (2 bag limit) and recycling collection every week. It’s convenient and available. Use it!

We recommend you first speak directly with the property owner where you have an issue, in person or by telephone. Most complaints are received verbally this way and resolved promptly.

Water Safety

  • Be Water Smart – wear Personal Floatation Devices (PFDs) in a boat or for swimming.
  • Watch your wake – generally boats cannot exceed speeds of 10 km/hour within 30 m (100 feet) of shoreline to protect against shoreline erosion.
  • You cannot drive a boat if impaired – same rules for motor vehicles.
  • Watch for posted speed limits on the lakes and channels.
  • Police do have a Marine Patrol Unit.

Resources - Information Sheets & By-laws

Submit a Complaint

 Is It An Emergency?

Call 9-1-1

An Emergency = dangerous, safety issues, excessive noise such as:

  • Impaired driving (boating and vehicles)
  • Out of control burning, unattended fires, nuisance smoke, fires during a burn ban, etc.
  • Dangerous misuse of fireworks
  • Violence, threatening behaviour
  • Excessive/disruptive noise – amplified music, yelling, shouting, etc.
  • Vehicles blocking an entrance or the roadway preventing access for other vehicles or emergency vehicles

Call Peterborough Humane Society at 705-745-4722 for:

  • Animals – stray animal (running at large), immediate welfare concern

Non-Emergency – Complaint Process

Selwyn Township Municipal Office business hours are Monday to Friday from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM. 
  • After Hours? Leave a message or send an email (see below) or submit a Complaint Form
    • For burn complaints, unattended fires, nuisance smoke, fires during a burn ban, fires in built-up areas, etc.
    • For noise complaints (ongoing/persistent issue with noise), property standards issues – long grass, unkempt property (garbage, derelict buildings and vehicles)
  • For animal related complaints (excessive barking, lack of stoop and scoop, animal welfare concerns, etc.)
    • Contact the Peterborough Humane Society at 705-745-4722 or email info@ptbohs.com


General By-law Information? (Property Standards, Noise, Dogs, Parking etc.)

Contact the Selwyn Township Municipal Office at 705-292-9507 or email info@selwyntownship.ca

Fire-related Question? (Open Air Fires, Burn Complaints, Unattended Fires, Nuisance Smoke, Fires During a Burn Ban, Fires in Built-up Areas, etc.)

Contact the Selwyn Township Fire Department at 705-292-7282 or email complaints@selwyntownship.ca 

Police-related Question? (Boating Regulations, Motor Vehicle Regulations, Impaired Driving, Violence etc.)

  • Peterborough County OPP (Smith & Ennismore Wards)
    • Tel: 1-888-310-1122
  • Peterborough Police (Lakefield Ward)
    • Tel: 705-876-1122

What Happens When the Complaint is Submitted?

1. All complaints are reviewed and investigated by the appropriate department or agency. Note: Complaints must come from those directly impacted by the issue (ex. a neighbouring property owner affected by the nuisance).

2. If there is no By-law infraction, the complaint will be closed.

3. Complainants may be asked to provide evidence of the issue (ex. recording of excessive noise, photos or video) to support the complaint.

4. If there is a legitimate By-law infraction, the offender will be advised of how to remedy the issue (ex. long grass = cut grass to the minimum height of 6”). Written correspondence will be sent to the offender/property owner to record the nature of the By-law infraction, the agreed remedy and the consequences should there be further issues/occurrences.

5. Where an offender/property owner agrees to comply, staff will verify and document the compliance. The file will be closed.

6. Where an offender/property owner does not make sufficient efforts to come into compliance with a By-law infraction, the following will apply:

  • Pursue a remedy as provided for in the respective nuisance By-law (ex. hire a third party to cut grass to the appropriate height and charge the property owner), and charge the property owner applicable inspection fees:
    • 1st attendance: written warning
    • 2nd attendance inspection fee: $250
    • 3rd attendance inspection fee: $500
    • 4th attendance inspection fee: $1,000
    • 5th and further inspections fee: $2,000

7. Where necessary, law enforcement or other applicable agencies may also be contacted (ex. police may be called).

8. Complainants will be advised of the outcome of their complaint.

Complaints must be made in writing (by mail, fax or e-mail),
and we will make every effort to resolve them as quickly as possible.

How are Complaints Enforced?

Police and By-law Enforcement Staff can issue fines and charges if there are violations of the Township’s By-laws and/or Federal or Provincial laws.

Fines and fees can range from $125 to $2,000.

Criminal charges can be laid and court orders for repeat offenders can also be implemented.

What if my Concern is Not Regarding a By-law or Property Standards Matter? 

The Township of Selwyn is committed to receiving and handling complaints from people dissatisfied with service, action or lack of action by a Township of Selwyn department or staff member in a timely and responsive manner. Complaints may be made verbally (in person or by telephone) or in writing (by mail, fax or e-mail).

Complaints should include information such as:

  • Details of what happened.
  • Where did this happen? Is it within the municipality’s areas of responsibility?
  • When it happened?
  • Who was involved?
  • What was said or done, or not done?
  • What kind of resolution is being sought?
  • Contact details of the Complainant

Tel: 705-292-9507
Email: info@selwyntownship.ca
Mail: Township of Selwyn
P.O. Box 270
Bridgenorth, ON K0L 1H0

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