Set Up a Council

This page contains information on how to go about setting up a council for your area.

There is no doubt that community and town councils can make a significant difference to the areas they serve. If there is not currently a community or town council serving your area it is not difficult to set one up. The independent research study carried out by Aberystwyth University in 2003 concluded that “the benefits of community and town councils outweigh the associated costs and that there is a strong argument for the establishment of community councils in all parts of Wales.” The study identified 8 key benefits of community councils.
The Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 provides for a community to apply to the relevant principal council (the county or county borough council) for the establishment of a community council, if:

  • A community meeting has taken an effective decision to hold a poll on a proposal to establish a council for the community. Such a decision is only effective if a minimum of 10% of the total local government electorate for that community or 150 electors (if 10% of the electors exceeds 150) are present and voting at the meeting
  • The poll cannot be held before the end of the period of 42 days beginning with the day on which the decision to hold the poll was taken.
  • A poll may not be held within 2 years of an earlier poll which resulted in a rejection of a proposal to establish a community council.
  • A majority of those voting in the poll must support the proposal to establish a community council.

Consequently, it's important to make sure you find a suitable venue to hold the community meeting and make sure it's well-publicised. It's also a good idea to try and get support from the principal authority for the area.
You will also need to think about what local area you wish to be covered by the new council. Every part of Wales falls within a community boundary, whether or not it is served by a community council, so the starting point is to establish the community boundary for you area. In some cases it may make sense for a new council to cover more than one community (providing there's not already another council serving one of them).
One Voice Wales is keen to support the establishment of new community councils. Please contact us if would like more information on setting up a council for your area.