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Public participation

Your Council welcomes public participation at meetings. You can express your views directly to the councillors at meetings by speaking or asking a question at the full Council meeting.

There are strict rules on how and when to register to make sure you have your say at a meeting. The rules differ slightly depending on the meeting and whether you want to ask a question, speak or present a petition. The rules are set out below, but if you have any queries please contact committeeservices@guildford.gov.uk to find out more.

Finding out what's on an agenda

Copies of all agendas are available for public inspection at the council offices five clear working days before the day of the meeting. Agendas are also loaded onto the Council's website usually on the day the agenda is published. The Key Executive Decisions page also provides a list of items that are due to be considered by the Council and committees over the next four months.

Asking a question at meetings of the Council

All 48 councillors attend the full council meeting. Meetings are normally held on Tuesdays.

At ordinary meetings, you may ask one question which must be relevant to the functions, powers or duties of the council.

Your question should be addressed to the Mayor, the Leader of the Council, a lead councillor or the chairman of the appropriate committee.

You must register your question in writing (by letter or e-mail) with Committee Services, see contact details below, by no later than 12 noon on the third working day before the meeting.

At the meeting

  • Please ensure that you arrive at least ten minutes before the scheduled start of the meeting so that we may note your attendance and go through the procedures with you.
  • Your question, together with a written response from the councillor to whom your question was addressed, will normally be set out in full on the Council's order paper which is circulated to councillors and to members of the public at the meeting and in the minutes of the meeting.
  • You will be allowed to ask one verbal supplementary question if one arises from the written answer given at the meeting and you will be allowed up to three minutes to do this.
  • Your question, including any supplementary question, will be answered without discussion and there will be no debate on the matter by councillors.

Speaking at meetings of the Council

As an alternative to asking a question, you may wish to address the Council for up to three minutes on any matter relevant to the functions, powers, or duties of the Council. You must give written notice of your wish to speak, together with a summary of the subject matter, (by letter or e-mail) to Committee Services, see contact details below, by no later than 12 noon one working day before the meeting.

At the meeting

  • Please ensure that you arrive at least ten minutes before the scheduled start of the meeting so that we may note your attendance and go through the procedures with you.
  • The Mayor will invite you to come to the public speaker's table to deliver your speech
  • You must declare any current or prospective financial or personal interest that you may have in the subject.

After you have addressed the meeting, the Leader of the Council, the relevant lead councillor, or committee chairman (as appropriate) may respond to your statement

 

Petitions

The Council has a separate scheme relating to the submission of petitions and e-petitions, details of which can be viewed by clicking on the related page listed on the right.

Speaking at committee meetings

You can speak at any of the following meetings on any items included in the public part of the agenda:

  • Executive

  • Corporate Governance and Standards Committee

  • Borough, Economy, and Infrastructure Executive Advisory Board

  • Society, Environment, and Council Development Executive Advisory Board

  • Overview and Scrutiny Committee

  • Licensing Committee

  • Planning Committee (slightly different rules apply please see below)

Registering to speak or ask questions at committee meetings (other than the Planning Committee)

You may address or ask a question on any item on the public agenda for a particular meeting, and you will be allowed up to three minutes in which to do this.

You must register your request to speak, or your question, with Committee Services (details below) in writing (by letter or e-mail) by no later than 12 noon one working day before the meeting.

When registering please state your name, address, daytime telephone number and the item on which you would like to speak or ask your question (together with the question). You may address or ask a question on any item on the public agenda for a particular meeting, and you will be allowed up to three minutes in which to do this.

At the meeting

  • Please ensure that you arrive at least ten minutes before the scheduled start of the meeting so that we may note your attendance and go through the procedures with you.

  • You will be invited to speak for up to three minutes, normally at the beginning of the agenda item, before the councillors discuss the matter

  • You must declare any current or prospective financial or personal interest that you may have in the subject.

  • Once you have made your speech you may not take part in further debate, although the councillors may ask you questions about your statement.

There are separate rules relating to speaking at the Planning Committee on planning and related applications. 

Essential information

  • Location
    All meetings are held at the Council Offices, Millmead, Guildford.  The Annual Council meeting in May is held at The Guildhall.

  • Time
    The majority of meetings start at 7pm with the exception of Licensing Sub-Committee and Licensing Regulatory Sub-Committee.

  • Dates of meetings
    You can find dates of all meetings via the calendar.