About standing for election

If you are thinking about standing in the local elections – taking place on Thursday 2 May – we have gathered together some useful information to help get you started. This page focuses on information for people interested in becoming a councillor for North Somerset Council, and also includes additional information for anyone wanting to stand for election at the parish council elections.

About North Somerset Council

North Somerset Council is a unitary council with 50 councillors responsible for local decision making. Councillors are elected once every four years. The council is governed using the Executive/Cabinet model of Leader and executive members and there are also a number of scrutiny panels and committees which examine the work across the council’s key areas of responsibility.

The corporate plan gives an overview of the council’s priority areas of work.

Find out more about unitary councils on the Local Government Association website.

Find out more about the Executive model and councillors’ roles and duties on the Be a Councillor website.

Being a North Somerset councillor

After the election, all councillors will be offered a full induction programme to familiarise them with the role. This will include an introduction to the decision making process, information on councillors’ statutory duties, code of conduct, ICT, planning, equality and diversity, effective overview and scrutiny and more.

All councillors will be issued with an iPad which will be used for the majority of council communication as the council is digital by default. There is a dedicated ICT support line available for councillors.

North Somerset councillors are entitled to claim an allowance and expenses for their duties. The allowance varies depending on the position held.

The council’s Constitution contains full details about councillor roles and responsibilities including eligibility, code of conduct and how the council operates.

What to do if you decide to stand for election

If you decide to stand for election you can find out more on the Electoral Commission website which includes information for prospective candidates.

Download our North Somerset Council nomination pack which includes instructions and the forms you need in order to stand for election to North Somerset Council.

Timetable for the election process

Tuesday 19 March

Publication of notice of election.

Wednesday 20 March

Start of nominations – delivery of nomination papers is between 10am and 4pm on each working day commencing on Wednesday 20 March, closing at 4pm on Wednesday 3 April.  There will be an opportunity to make an appointment for an informal check by electoral services staff within this timescale (further information to follow).

Wednesday 3 April – 4pm

Close of receipt of nominations.

Delivery of notice of withdrawal of candidature.

Appointment of election agents (not applicable to parish elections).

Thursday 4 April – 4pm

Publication of statements of persons nominated.

Friday 12 April – midnight

Last date for registration – deadline for applications.

Monday 15 April – 5pm

Receipt of postal vote and postal proxy vote applications.

Thursday 18 April

Bulk issue of postal votes.

Wednesday 24 April – 5pm

Receipt of ordinary proxy vote applications.

Thursday 25 April

Appointment of poll and count agents.

Thursday 2 May

Day of poll – polling stations open from 7am to 10pm.

Verification of the votes – following close of poll.

Friday 3 May

Counting of the votes.

About parish councils

There are 39 parish councils in North Somerset.  If more seats are contested than are available on each council, local elections will take place in that parish.  If you are interested in standing for election as a parish councillor you should contact your local parish council and also refer to the Electoral Commission website where you will be able to find more information.

Download our parish council nomination pack which includes the information and forms you need if you wish to stand for election as a town or parish councillor: