How to become a councillor

What do councillors do?

As well as setting policy and overseeing the work of officers, they also:

  • provide community leadership to the district
  • engage with local communities
  • act as ambassadors for the council
  • represent the community
  • act as advocates

Some councillors are also appointed to represent the council on outside organisations such as local partnerships or charities and public bodies.

Most councillors are members of political parties and stand for election as party candidates. The parties form voting groups in the council. In some councils, one party has a clear majority. In others, no party has overall control.

The main duty of a councillor is to represent the community's needs. Their workload can involve:

  • council meetings
  • committee meetings
  • responding to correspondence from constituents
  • holding surgeries
  • meeting with representatives from pressure groups and organisations