What are local government elections?
In local government elections you are voting for between one and three councillors to represent youron the local council. There are 388 local councils in England and about 20,000 councillors.
There are different types of council, in the UK and the type of council you have depends on where you live. Unitary Authorities (usually found in urban areas and in Scotland and Wales) cover all local government functions in their area. Two-tier authorities (usually more rural areas) comprise of counties which are made up of districts. The counties and districts are responsible for different policy areas. You can find out more here.
How are councillors elected?
Local candidates can put themselves forward to be elected for a local council ward. Once all the votes have been counted on election day the candidate who has the highest number of votes will be declared the winner.
However, in large wards the 2nd placed candidate winning a council seat for that ward too, meaning that ward has two people representing it. In some rare cases there can even be three people representing one ward.
All candidates that put themselves forward to stand in a local council election must either live in the council catchment area or have a business premise they own and work from that falls within this catchment area.