Residents urged to stand in Community Council elections

Stirling residents who want to make a difference to their local area are being encouraged to put their name forward to become a Community Councillor this year.

Hands up if you want to make a difference in your community. Email:
Anybody over the age of 16 can put themselves forward to become a Community Councillor

Community Council elections across Stirling’s 42 Community Councils get underway today (Monday 3 April) when nomination papers become available. Anyone over the age of 16 can get involved.

Community Councils are the most local tier of elected representatives for residents. They represent local people, advocate for their area and work in collaboration with others to improve services.

Community Councils are involved in a variety of activities and issues, including planning and licensing applications, and can support local initiatives by securing funding and sharing expertise.

"Every person has a role."

Trevor Geraghty, who served on the Strathard Community Council, including a period as Chair, is stepping back from official office after several years. He plans to continue to support former colleagues and take an active interest in the community.

Trevor said: “My introduction to Community Councils followed a planning meeting in Kinlochard. At that meeting I saw this group of diverse, hard-working volunteers get together and help navigate the complexities of the planning process.

“I met some great people that I would not have met otherwise; people with a very different background to my own.

“Throughout the pandemic that pre-existing structure proved invaluable. In Strathard, the Community Council was one of the few that met consistently, moving online very quickly. It was important in ensuring people were not left behind, getting supplies out and communicating with residents, advocating and supporting people.

“I am very proud of our work with the Community Trust, and in possibly being a catalyst for the establishment of the first Business Hub in rural Stirling. This meant that we had a great local facility to meet other bodies. Working with some of my brilliant colleagues who have more of a head for detail than I have, we also put in place the Community Life Plans* during my term as Chair of the Community Council. Some of the most valuable input into that process came from young people.

“I would 100% recommend getting involved in Community Council work if you would like to become more active in your community. Every person has a role, I would definitely say there is scope for a wide range of ages, life experience and backgrounds to get involved.”

Making a positive difference

Stirling Council leader Chris Kane said: “Having previously served as a Community Councillor prior to being elected to Stirling Council, I am keenly aware of the vital role that they play in local areas.

“From having a statutory right to comment on planning applications, to accessing money for local projects, to working collaboratively or being a critical friend to public bodies including Stirling Council and Police Scotland, I cannot stress enough how much of a positive difference an organised and engaged Community Council can have in any community.

“I first joined Mercat Cross Community Council in my twenties and I recall the advice I was given from a Community Councillor when I was thinking of standing – she said: ‘You can either complain or do something about it – what would you find more rewarding?’ I think about that often and I would encourage anyone who wants to do something positive to put themselves forward and join their local Community Council.”

Once memberships have been elected, Stirling Council will support inaugural meetings of each Community Council. For more information on Community Councils and becoming a Community Councillor visit the webpage or contact:

Paper forms can also be collected from local libraries and at the Customer First Office on Port Street, Stirling.

The timeline for the 2023 Community Council elections is as follows:

  • Monday 3 April Publication of Notice of Election
  • Wednesday 19 April Nominations to be submitted by (no later than 4pm)    
  • Thursday 20 April Nominations to be withdrawn by (no later than 4pm)   
  • Thursday 29 June publication of results
  • From Monday 3 July arrange Inaugural meetings (where ballot has been held).

*Community Life Plans support residents to collectively identify key priorities, aspirations and tangible and intangible assets for their community, such as buildings, sports facilities, leisure opportunities, etc. These are identified by finding what is common and shared among the lived experiences of residents.