Local council is a universal term for community, village, neighbourhood, parish and town councils. They are the first tier of local government and are statutory bodies. They serve communities and are elected by residents. They can raise their own precept (a form of council tax). There are 10,000 local councils in England made up of 100,000 councillors. Local councils have overall responsibility for the well-being of the community. Their work falls into three main categories; delivery of services, improving the quality of life, and giving communities a democratic voice.
A local councillor is a voice for their community and acts as community leaders who represent the interests of the communities they serve. Local councillors have three main responsibilities; decision-making, monitoring and getting involved locally.
NALC is encouraging residents who are passionate about their community to stand for election. Local councils are committed to the inclusion and recognition of all regardless of race, culture, ability, ethnicity or gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, marital status, religious affiliation, and socioeconomic status.
Do you or someone you know, have what it takes to be a local councillor? Contact your local council and stand for election now.
LOCAL COUNCIL ELECTIONS 2019
NALC has published a report on local council elections after undertaking the first national research of its kind.
The purpose of the report was to undertake extensive research and collect a pool of data that gives a better picture of the elections in 2019 that will help NALC shape future campaigns and create a range of resources to help local councils and county associations.
NALC is committed to supporting local councils, councillors and county associations to increase the numbers of candidates, raise the profile of councillors, delivery more local media coverage and to make the process simpler.
NALC collected data from local councils, councillors and county association across England over six months through a survey which had over 3,700 respondents. The data gathered explored behaviours, experiences, geography, size of councils and looked into who exactly is the average councillor.
STANDING FOR ELECTION
Engaging with the community is vital when it comes to recruiting residents to stand in your local elections. NALC is encouraging all local councils to engage with as many residents from their community as possible. This will enhance local councils through the diversity of experiences, skills and knowledge, and will help local councils become representative of their communities.
NALC has produced several resources for your local council to use to help residents stand for election, see below:
- Running a recruitment campaign to the correct timeline is vital — read more on the elections timetable
- All about local councils – top tips on local councils and how you can stand
- Editable A3 elections poster
- Editable A4 elections poster
- Editable A5 elections flyer
- Editable elections press release
- Election promotional video
- Promotional videos from Cllr Eartha Pond, Queen's Park Community Council, Cllr Nick Penny, Coleford Town Council, Cllr Kai Taylor, Prescot Town Council and Cllr Andrew Cooper, Northwich Town Council on why they became councillors
To stand for election to a local council you must:
- Be a UK or Commonwealth citizen; or be a citizen of the Republic of Ireland; or be a citizen of another Member State of the European Union.
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Be an elector of the local council, or in the past 12 months occupied land or other premises in the area the local council serves (as owner or tenant) or work in the area local council serves (as your principal or only place of work), or live within three miles of the local council boundary.
- Local councils welcome and are committed to the inclusion and recognition of all regardless of race, culture, ability, ethnicity or gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, marital status, religious affiliation, and socioeconomic status.
- The Good Councillor's guide (login required)
- Guidance for candidates standing for election to their parish and community councils
- Guidance for candidates standing as an independent candidate
- Guidance for candidates standing as a party candidate
- Guidance on candidate spending return and declaration
- Guidance for candidates – the campaign