Can I be elected to more than one Council? Yes you may be a Councillor for several Councils at the same time – such as District Council, County Council and Parish Council.
Do I have to belong to a political party? No. Although the majority of people do stand for election to become Councillors as a result of joining a political party, some people stand for election as independents.
How much of my time will it take up? It is for you to decide the level of commitment you are able to give to being a Councillor. Generally Councillors tend to set the number of hours they can allocate to suit their personal circumstances this could range from a few hours every week to a few hours each day at busier times.
Will I be paid? There is no salary for being a Councillor, however, you will be paid an allowance to reimburse you for time and expenses incurred whilst on Council business. In 2019/20 the allowance was £5,000 per Member. For more information please see our Member Allowance Scheme webpage.
What support can I expect? A comprehensive induction programme is arranged for all elected Councillors. Some training and development events will be essential (compulsory) for you to attend and these will be clearly marked on the programme. As a Councillor you will be using email, a council issued tablet to access council agendas and other related information and full IT support will be given. Many councillors now also choose to keep in touch with local people through social media and personal webpages. In addition to this, there is a rolling 12 month Member development programme of training and briefing events with ongoing support to Councillors from the Democratic Services Team.
Will I get time off work? By law your employer must allow you to take a reasonable amount of time off during working hours to perform your duties as a Councillor. Many employers recognise that the skills people develop as Councillors are also very useful in the workplace. You should, however, discuss this with your employer before making a commitment.
Who pays for my election costs? You have to pay your election costs, however, if you are a member of a political or other group, you may find that financial help is available. You will need to check this with your political party or group. You must keep all receipts, as you will be required to submit a statement of election expenses shortly after the election. There is a limit on election expenditure. More information can be found in the candidates nomination pack.
I’d like to become a Councillor, What next? The next set of Council elections are scheduled to take place on 4 May 2023. Full details of the electoral process will be available online in Feburary 2023 and this will include the dates of any briefings that will be held for candidates and the nomination papers which need to be completed to stand for election. For more information please see our Electoral Registration and Elections webpages. If any vacancies arise on the Council before the elections in 2023 details of any by-elections will be given on the forthcoming election dates page.
When do council meetings take place? Most Council meetings and committee meetings are held in the evening, starting at 5pm but some will take place during the day. You can see a full calendar of council meetings on our democracy website. Councillors are appointed to serve on committees at the Annual Council meeting which is held in May each year.