Full Council meetings

There are three ways you can raise issues at Full Council meetings.

  • Deputations: You can apply to speak at a Council meeting on behalf of a group. An individual or group appointed to represent others and speak on their behalf is known as a deputation.
  • Public questions: You can submit up to two questions on any subject within the Council's control. Questions at a Full Council meeting are known as public questions.
  • Petitions: If you have good reasons for asking the Council to take an action, you can make a petition.

  • An individual or group can apply to speak to the Council on behalf of others by applying to the Council in writing. This is called applying to bring a deputation to speak to the Council. When you write to apply to speak to the Council, you need to include:

    • the full contact details (including the home address and telephone number) of the main applicant
    • details of the issue you wish to raise.

    Your application must reach the Council five working days before the published date of the Full Council meeting. This is usually on the Wednesday one week before the meeting.

    Send your application by post, or fax or email to the Committee Services Team.

    What happens next?
    The Mayor will decide whether to accept your application and we will advise you of the outcome. We will give you the reasons if we deny your request.

    You can have any number of people in your deputation, but only two may speak. For each group, the speech shouldn't be longer than seven minutes in total. If you need more time, you will need to apply for an extension at least 24 hours before the meeting.

  • You must be a resident or local taxpayer of the borough to submit a question to a Full Council meeting. You may submit up to two questions in writing or by email. State your question clearly and include your full contact details (include your home address and telephone number).

    Then send your question to the Committee Services team.

    All questions must reach us by 12pm, five working days before the Full Council meeting. This is usually the Wednesday before the meeting. We will not take any question received after this time. You'll find dates for Full Council meetings in the online meetings calendar.

    Please note: We will not accept any questions of a personal nature.

    What happens next?
    The Council will circulate your question and compile responses. Your question and the response will be available in writing at the meeting.

    At the meeting, the Mayor will also invite you ask a supplementary question to clarify any points. This is not a chance to make a statement or raise a new question on a different matter.

    Once you have asked a question, you cannot submit a similar question for the next three months.

  • Any Councillor can present a petition to the Council on your behalf. If you have a petition you like to present, you can contact:

    Find your local Councillor

    You'll need to state clearly in your petition:

    • the aim and reasons of the petition
    • what action you would like the Council to take.

    Please mark clearly the full contact details (including home address and telephone number) of the lead petitioner on the first page of your petition, or on a covering letter.

    Criteria for a valid petition
    For a petition to be valid, there must be at least three petitioners - who are not members of the same family - signing it.

    The request in your petition must not be of a personal nature.

    What happens next?
    Your Councillor will present the petition to the Full Council at the next available meeting. The Council will receive the petition without debate and you will not be able to speak at this point.

    The Council will then refer your petition to the director or the relevant service or department, copied to the corresponding cabinet member, for investigation and response.

    The director will report on the outcome of the investigation to the Full Council within two meetings of its first presentation. We will then invite you to the meeting and you can speak.

    Planning and licensing applications
    If your petition relates to a planning or licensing application it will be referred to the relevant director and reported to the Committee meeting which is considering the application. A report will subsequently be submitted back to Full Council.

    The Council can not overturn a planning or licensing decision once it has been made.

    Highways issues
    We will present responses to petitions relating to highways issues to the Council's Highways Committee, although the petitions themselves will be presented to Full Council.