Lancashire County Council

Lancashire County Council is the upper-tier local authority for the non-metropolitan county of Lancashire, England. It consists of 84 councillors. After the 2017 Lancashire County Council election, the council is under Conservative control, having been under no overall control from 2013–17 and under Conservative control from 2009-13.

Lancashire County Council
Arms of Lancashire County Council.svg
Chair of the Council
Cllr Paul Rigby, Conservative
Leader of the Council
Chief executive
Seats84 councillors
Lancashire County Council March 2019.svg
Political groups
  Conservative (45)
Other parties
  Labour (30)
  Liberal Democrats (4)
  Independent (1)
  UKIP (1)
Length of term
4 years
First Past the Post
Last election
4 May 2017
Meeting place
Preston County Hall 1.jpg
County Hall, Preston, England

Prior to the 2009 Lancashire County Council election, the county had been under Labour control since 1985.

The Council leader, County Councillor Geoff Driver, chairs a cabinet of eight councillors - the others being A Atkinson (Deputy Leader), P Buckley, S Charles, G Gooch, M Green, K Iddon and S Turner. The eight cabinet members each have responsibility for particular functions of the council. The Interim Chief Executive and Director of Resources is Angie Ridgwell who was appointed in January 2018


The council was established in 1889 under the Local Government Act 1888, covering the administrative county. It was reconstituted under the Local Government Act 1972 to cover a different territory. In the 1990s, Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool left the area covered by the council.

One ConnectEdit

In May 2011 the council's Conservative administration established a partnership with BT Group called One Connect Limited. 40% was owned by the council and 60% by BT. 800 council staff were seconded to it. It was to run various back office functions and it was claimed it would save £400 million over ten years. In 2014 the partnership was dissolved, though some services were still run by BT.[1] A police investigation followed allegations of corrupt practices and fraud. In May 2017 Conservative councillor Geoff Driver, Phil Halsall, the council's former Chief Executive, David McElhinney, former chief executive of One Connect and its sister organisation Liverpool Connect – and Ged Fitzgerald the current Liverpool City Council chief executive and former Lancashire County Council chief executive were arrested “on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and witness intimidation.” As of September 2019 no one has been charged with any offences and it is estimated the Police cost is over £2m. [2]


Elections are held every four years.

Election Number of councillors elected by each political party
Conservative Labour Liberal Democrats Independent Green Party BNP UKIP Idle Toad
2017 46 30 4 2 1 0 1[3] 0
2013 35 39 6 3 1 0 0 0
2009 51 16 10 3 2 1 0 1
2005 31 44 6 1 1 0 0 1
2001 27 44 5 1 1 0 0 0

Political controlEdit

Election Party in control
2017[4] Conservative
2013 No overall control
2009[5] Conservative
2005 Labour
2001 Labour
1997 Labour
1993 Labour
1989 Labour
1985 Labour
1981 No overall control
1977 Conservative
1973 Conservative


In July 2020, County Hall announced that it wanted to scrap itself and the 15 other councils that currently make up Lancashire's complex local government map and replace them with three standalone authorities. In September 2020 County Hall submitted an outline plan to the government that outlines the proposed new unitary authorities and the areas they would cover. The new authorities would be, Central Lancashire (based on the footprints of Preston, Chorley, South Ribble and West Lancashire councils), North West Lancashire(Blackpool, Fylde, Wyre, Lancaster and Ribble Valley) and East Pennine Lancashire (Blackburn with Darwen, Burnley, Rossendale, Hyndburn and Pendle). These authorities would be governed by an elected mayor. The Major shake up to Lancashire's council structure is in a bid to gain more funding and power.[6]

County LibraryEdit

Lancashire adopted the Public Libraries Act, 1919, in 1924. Library services were slow to develop as the average ratable value of the area outside the county boroughs and the other local authorities which had already adopted the act was relatively low. In 1938/39 the average expenditure on urban libraries per head was 1s. 9d., but that on county libraries was only 8 1/4d. (about two fifths of the former amount). Another disadvantage was that government of libraries was by a libraries sub-committee of the education committee of the council (the librarian having to report to the education officer who might not have been sympathetic to libraries). The central administration of the county library is at Preston where there are special services, special collections and staff to maintain a union catalogue.[7]


  1. ^ "Lancashire County Council to scrap One Connect Limited". Lancashire Post. 24 January 2014. Retrieved 22 May 2017.
  2. ^ "Four leading council figures arrested". Lancashire Post. 22 May 2017. Retrieved 22 May 2017.
  3. ^ "Lancashire County Council: Elections".
  4. ^ "Lancashire election result 2017". BBC. 4 May 2017. Retrieved 4 May 2017.
  5. ^ "Lancashire election result 2009". BBC. 5 June 2009. Retrieved 16 September 2009.
  6. ^ "This is why Lancashire County Council wants to scrap itself - and every other local authority in the area". Retrieved 8 October 2020.
  7. ^ Cotton, G. B. (1971) "Public libraries in the North West"; North Western Newsletter; Manchester: Library Association (North Western Branch), no. 116: Libraries in the North West, pp. 5-24 (p. 8)

External linksEdit