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Be a Councillor

Could you have what it takes to become a councillor

If you care about the area that you live or work in and the issues facing local people, you could be a councillor.

Perhaps you enjoy reading the local newspaper and often have a strong opinion on the issues you read about. You may talk to friends and colleagues about what’s going on in the area. You may feel that certain sections of the community or people who live in a particular neighbourhood are getting a raw deal and need stronger representation.

Research tells us that people are most concerned about issues such as crime, transport and the local environment.

The Council can make a difference on all these issues and many more, and so can you as a local councillor.

What do councillors do?

The councillor’s role and responsibilities include:

Most councillors hold regular drop-in surgeries each month. Surgeries are a chance for residents to meet you and discuss their problems or concerns. You may also need to spend time visiting constituents in their homes.

On top of this you will be dealing with letters, emails and phone calls from constituents. When dealing with casework or council business you may need to meet with council staff. These meetings, and any visits to council offices, may need to take place during the working day.

Then there are council and scrutiny meetings. Scrutiny is the crucial process of looking at the work and decisions of the executive. As well as the close examination of councillors, it can also involve the community and interested parties.

Councillors may also sit on quasi-judicial committees, for example the planning committee, which takes non-political decisions on planning applications.

To find out more, read our guide to becoming a councillor (PDF 1.73mb), email our electoral team or phone 01795 417360.

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