Becoming a councillor

Who can become a Councillor and how do I apply?


What do local councils do?

Your local council has an overall responsibility for the wellbeing of your local community. Their work falls into three main categories:

  • Delivery of Services
  • Improve quality of life for residents
  • Give communities a democratic voice

Become a local councillor

As a local councillor you can become a voice for your community and make a real change. Councillors are community leaders and represent the interests of the communities they serve.

Local councillors have three main responsibilities:

  • Decision making
  • Monitoring
  • Getting involved locally


Getting Elected

To stand for election to a local Council you must meet the following criteria.

Nomination criteria

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • 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 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 the local council serves (as your principal or only place of work); or live within three miles of the local council boundary

You may not become a Parish Councillor if:

  • You are a paid employee of the Parish Council
  • Within the previous five years you have been convicted of an offence and have been sentenced to not less than three months' imprisonment (whether suspended or not) without the option of a fine
  • Within the previous 12 months you have been subject to a bankruptcy restrictions order or an interim order
  • If you are subject to any enactment relating to corrupt or illegal practices.

If you are interested you can contact the Council at or download the application form.


Parish Council Elections

Ordinary Parish Council elections take place every four years - usually on the first Thursday in May unless this clashes with a parliamentary general election. The next Parish Council election for Clanfield will be May 2023

A Parish Councillor will serve for a period of four years if elected at an ordinary election unless they resign before the end of that period or become disqualified for any reason. If a vacancy occurs in between the scheduled four yearly elections, there may need to be an extra election to fill the vacant position.

If there are an insufficient number of valid candidates for an election to fill all of the vacancies on the Parish Council, all those who have been validly nominated are automatically elected as councillors.


When insufficient candidates are proposed for seats at an election, the council may choose someone to fill a vacancy through co-option.