About the Council

The Council

Bradford Council is the 5th largest of 36 Metropolitan District Councils in the Country, which serve the larger cities and conurbations.  There are four other metropolitan authorities in the West Yorkshire area – Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield.

The City of Bradford has the status of a City and a Metropolitan Borough. In addition to the “Traditional Bradford City”, the Metropolitan District includes the following main areas of population: Addingham, Baildon, Bingley, Burley, Cullingworth, Denholme, Eastburn, Haworth, Ilkley, Keighley, Menston, Oxenhope, Queensbury, Silsden, Shipley and Steeton.

The total population of the District is approximately 537,200 and it covers 141 square miles.

Bradford Council has a workforce of 12,800 (including schools).

Committee structure and decision making

The Council’s democratic decision making arrangements are set out in the Council’s Constitution. All 90 elected Members of the Council come together at meetings of the Full Council. Full Council approves documents contained in the policy framework and considers motions submitted by the political groups.

Overall control of Bradford Council is held by Labour which takes key decisions through the Executive. The Executive comprises the Leader of the Council and five other Members, appointed by the Leader, each responsible for a portfolio of services. The Executive is currently an all Labour administration and the matters on which decisions are to be taken are published in advance on the forward plan. Some Executive functions are delegated along with the budgets to the 5 Area Committees which are made up of elected Members from those areas. Area Committees encourage community development and create a link between communities and the Council. Dialogue on matters of local interest also take place at meetings of the Neighbourhood Forums.

The Council’s services and decision making is scrutinised by 5 overview and scrutiny committees covering service areas. The overview and scrutiny committees each have a work programme and make recommendations to the Executive or Full Council on how to make service improvements.

The Council also has a number of other committees/panels covering matters such as licensing, planning and governance.

The Council

Bradford District is composed of 30 Council wards each returning 3 councillors with elections in three of every four years. It is currently led by a Labour administration holding 52 of the 90 seats.

The Council has a gross budget of close to £1.2 billion, a net revenue budget for 2019-20 of £360m and a capital programme of around £550m.

It was recently identified by independent consultants impower as the tenth most productive Council in the country. A 2017 Local Government Association Peer Review found evidence of strong leadership, confidence and ambition; our Joint Targeted Area Inspection (JTAI) of domestic abuse identified strong and mature partnership working across different agencies.

Council leaders recognise that no one is as good as everyone, so we work in close collaboration with partners across sectors, agencies and communities to maximise the impact of all of the district’s assets and resources on achieving and sustaining priority outcomes and building resilience For example, our economic partnership brings together a team of senior leaders from key organisations, local businesses, Bradford Council, the University of Bradford, the City Region LEP and the Chamber of Commerce, to oversee and drive delivery of our inclusive growth agenda.

A thriving voluntary and community sector makes a significant contribution to the wellbeing, resilience and prosperity of our people and communities and our People Can campaign is connecting more and more people to active citizenship and opportunities for co-production with public services.