What is a Community Council?

What is a Community Council?

Community Councils were first established in Scotland following the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973. The Local Authority is responsible for establishing Community Councils, they are also responsible for establishing the area each Community Council covers and number of positions available.

CCC city view

Map showing all 46 of Edinburgh’s Community Council areas (some areas might not have an active Community Council). The Craigmillar Community Council area is shown in blue.


Community Councils are run by local residents who are elected to serve in the best interests in their community. Community Councillors that are elected to serve their area abide by the Code of Conduct, stating that they must serve their community honestly, objectively, openly and with respect to others.

The main role of a Community Council is to:

  • gather and express the views of the local community by carrying out surveys and campaigning on local issues
  • represent the views of the community to public bodies and other organisations
  • to always act in the best interests of the community it serves
  • promote the well-being of the community and foster community spirit

Community Councils also have a statutory right to be consulted on planning applications and often comment on major planning applications within their area.

Elected officials such as Local Authority Councillors, MP’s, MSPs and MEPs are Ex Officio representatives of a Community Council if it falls within the area that they represent. They may attend meetings as often as they like, offering advice and assistance to the Community Council but they hold no voting rights.