Northumberland County Council

Northumberland County Council
Northumberland County Council
1st unitary term
Coat of arms or logo
Type Unicameral
Leader Jeff Reid
Chairman David Woodard
Members 67
Political groups  Liberal Democrats
 Conservative and Independent group
 Labour Party
Voting system First past the post
Last election 1 May 2008
Meeting place
County Hall, Morpeth

Northumberland County Council is a unitary authority in North East England. It was originally formed in 1889 as the council for the administrative county of Northumberland and reformed in 1974 to cover a the newly formed non-metropolitan county of Northumberland. As part of the 2009 structural changes to local government in England it became a unitary authority with the same boundaries, this disregarded the referendum held in 2005 in which the population voted against the forming of a Unitary authority.[1] For Eurostat purposes the area under the jurisdiction of Northumberland County Council is a NUTS 3 region (code UKC21) and is one of five boroughs or unitary districts that comprise the "Northumberland and Tyne and Wear" NUTS 2 region.

The last election for the County Council was as a county council only, on 1 May 2008.

Naming of the new Unitary Authority

Throughout 2008, the people of Northumberland were consulted about the new name of the unitary authority. The choice was between having the name of the incumbent county council as the name for the new unitary authority - Northumberland County Council or whether a brand new name should be given - Northumberland Council. Online polls were held and the votes of staff within the former district councils were collated and overall, the name of the incumbent county council was preferred on a ratio of nearly 2:1.[2]

On 17 December 2008 it was decided that the new name would be Northumberland County Council. The Chairman of the Council stated that:

Having considered the findings of this consultation, it has been decided to call the new authority Northumberland County Council. It is important to reiterate that whilst the single unitary will adopt the name of an existing council, this is emphatically not a County Council takeover. As of 1 April 2009, all existing Northumberland councils will be abolished to make way for a brand new organisation, with new vision, values, and behaviours.

Legally however, the County Council remains the same body as at present, simply assuming the functions of the districts.[3]


Following the election of 2008, the Northumberland County Council has no overall control, with the Liberal Democrats being the largest group on the Council.

Affiliation Members
  Liberal Democrat Group 25
  Conservative and Independent Group 19
  Labour Group 17
  Independent Group
  Independent Liberal Democrat


Coordinates: 55°09′13″N 1°41′03″W / 55.15361°N 1.68417°W / 55.15361; -1.68417

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