Public speaking and asking questions to committees

If you would like to ask a question or make a statement at one of our Committee meetings, or speak at a meeting with regard to a planning application, please find further information below.

Questions and Statements at Committee meetings

Do you want to ask a question of one of our Committees with regard to the services we provide? Is there something you wish to say about the way your local services are run? Public questions and statements can be made at every ordinary meeting of the following Committees:


Up to 30 minutes will be set aside for questions and statements from members of the public at ordinary meetings of the above Committees. Any member of the public who lives, works, attends an educational establishment or owns or leases land in the Borough may ask a question or make a statement on matters within the Terms of Reference of the Committee.

All questions must meet the requirements of the Council's Constitution, as set out in Protocol for Members of the Public Speaking at Committees, which is Annexe 4.2 of the Council's Operating Framework. All questions must consist of one question only and cannot consist of multiple parts. Questions and statements cannot relate to planning or licensing committees matters, the personal affairs of an individual, or a matter which is exempt from disclosure or confidential under the Local Government Act 1972.  Questions which in the view of the Chair are defamatory, offensive, vexatious or frivolous will not be accepted. Each question or statement will be limited to 3 minutes in length.

If you wish to ask a question or make a statement at a meeting, please contact Democratic Services at:

Questions must be received in writing by Democratic Services by noon on the third working day before the day of the meeting.

Statements must be received by Democratic Services by noon on the working day before the day of the meeting.


Public speaking at Planning Committee meetings

Public speaking in support or against planning applications is permitted at meetings of the Planning Committee. Two speakers can register to speak in support (including the applicant/agent) and two can register to speak against any single application. Speakers will be registered in the order that submissions to register are received. An individual can waive their right to speak in favour of an individual who attempted to register at a later time, or alternatively, several members of the public may appoint one person to speak on their behalf, provided agreement to this arrangement can be reached amongst themselves.

Speakers shall have a maximum of 3 minutes to address the Committee and remarks must be confined to the application upon which the speaker registered.

For more information on public speaking please see section 11 of the  Model Code of Practice in respect of Planning Matters, which is Annex 4.8 of the Council's Operating Framework.

If you wish to register to speak on an application at a meeting of the Planning Committee, please contact Democratic Services by email at, or by telephone on 01372 732000 in advance of the deadline for registration. Please state the application(s) on which you wish to speak, and whether you wish to speak in support or against the application.

The deadline for registration to speak on an application at a meeting of the Planning Committee is Noon on the day of the meeting. Agendas for meetings of the Planning Committee are available online.

After all the speakers have finished speaking for an item, the Chair will open the item to the Committee for debate. At the end of the debate the Committee will vote on the proposal.