Islington London Borough Council

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Islington London Borough Council
Coat of arms or logo
Type
Type London borough council of the London Borough of Islington
Leadership
Leader Richard Watts, Labour
Mayor Barry Edwards
Structure
Seats 48 councillors
Labour
36 / 48
Lib Dems
12 / 48
Elections
Voting system First past the post
Last election 6 May 2010
Next election 22 May 2014
Meeting place
IslingtonTownHall.jpg
Town Hall, Islington
Website
www.islington.gov.uk

Islington London Borough Council is the local authority for the London Borough of Islington in Greater London, England. It is a London borough council, one of 32 in the United Kingdom capital of London. Islington is divided into 16 wards, each electing three councillors.[1] Following the May 2010 election, Islington London Borough Council comprises 35 Labour Party councillors and 13 Liberal Democrat councillors.[2] The council was created by the London Government Act 1963 and replaced two local authorities: Finsbury Metropolitan Borough Council and Islington Metropolitan Borough Council.

History[edit]

There have previously been a number of local authorities responsible for the Islington area. The current local authority was first elected in 1964, a year before formally coming into its powers and prior to the creation of the London Borough of Islington on 1 April 1965. The present Islington Borough Council replaced Finsbury Metropolitan Borough Council and Islington Metropolitan Borough Council. Both were created in 1900, in Islington the borough council replaced the parish vestry. Finsbury had a more convoluted history with the metropolitan borough council replacing the Vestry of the Parish of St Luke, the Vestry of the Parish of Clerkenwell and the Holborn District Board of Works (for Glasshouse Yard and St Sepulchre).

It was envisaged through the London Government Act 1963 that Islington as a London local authority would share power with the Greater London Council. The split of powers and functions meant that the Greater London Council was responsible for "wide area" services such as fire, ambulance, flood prevention, and refuse disposal; with the local authorities responsible for "personal" services such as social care, libraries, cemeteries and refuse collection. This arrangement lasted until 1986 when Islington Council gained responsibility for some services that had been provided by the Greater London Council, such as waste disposal. Islington became an education authority in 1990. Since 2000 the Greater London Authority has taken some responsibility for highways and planning control from the council, but within the English local government system the council remains a "most purpose" authority in terms of the available range of powers and functions.

Politics[edit]

Islington Council is elected every four years, with 48 councillors being elected from 16 wards. From 1964 to 1998 Labour controlled the council, apart from a 3-year period of Conservative control from 1968 to 1971, and a brief period of SDP control between 1981 and 1982 following the defection of Labour councillors. The Liberal Democrats then had a majority from 1999 to the 2006 election, but continued to run the council as a minority administration until 2010 when Labour won a majority. As of the 2010 election the council is composed of the following councillors:-[3]

Party Councillors
  Labour Party 35
  Liberal Democrats 13

In 2013 Labour won a seat from the Liberal Democrats in a by-election and one LD councillor resigned the whip to sit as an independent; leaving the political composition of the Council as 36 Lab, 11 LD, 1 Ind.[4] In October 2013 Richard Watts was elected Leader of the Council replacing Catherine West. [5]

References[edit]