Islington London Borough Council

Islington Council
Coat of arms
Cllr Una O'Halloran
Since 11 May 2017
Leader of the Council
Cllr Richard Watts, Labour
Since 10 October 2013
Seats 48 councillors
Political groups
     Labour (47)
Other parties
     Green (1)
Length of term
4 years
First past the post
Last election
3 May 2018
Next election
May 2022
Meeting place
Town Hall, Islington

Islington London Borough Council is the local authority for the London Borough of Islington in Greater London, England. The council was created by the London Government Act 1963 and replaced two local authorities: Finsbury Metropolitan Borough Council and Islington Metropolitan Borough Council. It is a London borough council, one of 32 in the United Kingdom capital of London. Islington is divided into 16 wards, each electing three councillors.[1] Following the May 2018 election, Islington Council comprises 47 Labour Party councillors and 1 Green Party councillor.[2] Of these 48 councillors, the Leader of the Council is Councillor Richard Watts , while the Mayor is Councillor Una O'Halloran.[3][4]


There have previously been a number of local authorities responsible for the Islington area. The current local authority was first elected in 1964, a year before formally coming into its powers and prior to the creation of the London Borough of Islington on 1 April 1965. The present Islington Borough Council replaced Finsbury Metropolitan Borough Council and Islington Metropolitan Borough Council. Both were created in 1900, in Islington the borough council replaced the parish vestry. Finsbury had a more convoluted history with the metropolitan borough council replacing the Vestry of the Parish of St Luke, the Vestry of the Parish of Clerkenwell and the Holborn District Board of Works (for Glasshouse Yard and St Sepulchre).

It was envisaged through the London Government Act 1963 that Islington as a London local authority would share power with the Greater London Council. The split of powers and functions meant that the Greater London Council was responsible for "wide area" services such as fire, ambulance, flood prevention, and refuse disposal; with the local authorities responsible for "personal" services such as social care, libraries, cemeteries and refuse collection. This arrangement lasted until 1986 when Islington Council gained responsibility for some services that had been provided by the Greater London Council, such as waste disposal. Islington became an education authority in 1990. Since 2000 the Greater London Authority has taken some responsibility for highways and planning control from the council, but within the English local government system the council remains a "most purpose" authority in terms of the available range of powers and functions.


Islington Council is elected every four years, with 48 councillors being elected from 16 wards. From 1964 to 1998 Labour controlled the council, apart from a 3-year period of Conservative control from 1968 to 1971, and a brief period of SDP control between 1981 and 1982 following the defection of Labour councillors. The Liberal Democrats then had a majority from 1999 to the 2006 election, but continued to run the council as a minority administration until 2010 when Labour won a majority. In 2013 Labour won a seat from the Liberal Democrats in a by-election and one LD councillor resigned the whip to sit as an independent; leaving the political composition of the Council as 36 Lab, 11 LD, 1 Ind.[5] As of the 2018 election the council is composed of the following councillors:[2]

Party Councillors
Labour 47
Green Party 1
Total 48

In October 2013 Richard Watts was elected Leader of the Council replacing Catherine West. [6]

See also


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