The leader of Southampton City Council has insisted a “significant programme of change” will improve services after the authority was ranked in the bottom fifth of a national league table.

The Times published rankings for all councils in England based on data released by a new agency, the Office for Local Government (Oflog).

These tables of 317 local authorities included key service areas of waste management, corporate and finance, adult social care, planning and roads.

Overall, Southampton City Council was ranked 276th. While it positioned strongly for planning (23rd) and social care (65th), the well-documented challenges in other areas were reflected for waste (311th), finance (276th) and roads (269th).

Labour council leader Cllr Lorna Fielker said: “The Local Government Association (LGA) has raised concerns about the way this league has been calculated however, that does not mean that Southampton City Council is complacent.

“We have a significant programme of change which is looking at what we do and how we do it in order to ensure that we provide quality services to residents in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible.”

Southampton City Council was in the middle of the pack in the overall rankings when compared against Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) statistical neighbour councils.

Southampton Conservative group leader Cllr Peter Baillie said the results did not come as a surprise.

He said: “You can add in that Southampton has the second worst rank for post-16 education. You can also add that our council housing stock is ranked as being in the second worst condition in the country with over 400 council homes empty at any one time.

“The poor rankings are nothing to do with central government finance, they are down to having an incompetent Labour administration for 11 of the last 12 years.”

Cllr Baillie said the Labour administration had not been able to manage the council’s finances properly.

He said progress made in planning and children’s social care were “two semi-bright spots in an otherwise shocking indictment of local Labour”.

Cllr Richard Blackman, Liberal Democrat group leader, said he was always wary of league tables due to never quite knowing the information used to build them.

However, he said the areas where the council looked to not be performing very well reflected wider concerns.