Council coat of arms
|Founded||1 April 1996|
Daniel De'Ath, Welsh Labour
Huw Thomas, Welsh Labour
Sarah Merry, Welsh Labour
Length of term
|First past the post|
|1995 Cardiff Council election|
|2017 Cardiff Council election|
|2021 Cardiff Council election|
|County Hall, Cardiff|
The County Council of the City and County of Cardiff (Welsh: Cyngor Sir Dinas a Sir Caerdydd) has been the governing body for Cardiff, one of the Principal Areas of Wales, since 1996. The council consists of 75 councillors, representing 29 electoral wards. The authority is properly styled as 'the County Council of the City and County of Cardiff' or in common use Cardiff Council. No other style is sanctioned for use on Council Documents although it does occasionally appear wrongly as Cardiff County Council on documents and signage. The City & County itself is usually simply referred to as Cardiff.
After the 2004 election, which changed the control of the council from Labour to No Overall Control, the Liberal Democrats formed a minority administration, led by Cllr Rodney Berman. The Liberal Democrats remained the largest party following the 2008 local election, and formed an administration with Plaid Cymru.
Elections to Cardiff Council take place every four years. The last election was 4 May 2017.
|Heath & Birchgrove Independents
|Term of Office||Leader||Party|
|1995-2004||Russell Goodway||Welsh Labour|
|2004-2012||Rodney Berman||Liberal Democrat|
|2012-2014||Heather Joyce||Welsh Labour|
|2014-2017||Phil Bale||Welsh Labour|
|2017||Huw Thomas||Welsh Labour|
At the age of 31, Huw Thomas became Wales' youngest council leader when he was elected in May 2017.
The council was run by a Labour majority administration between 1995 and 2004. The Liberal Democrats ran a minority administration from 2004 to 2008, in coalition with Plaid Cymru.
Following the 2008 local elections in Cardiff there was still no party with an overall majority. The Lib Dems increased their total number of councillors to 35, forming an administration with Plaid Cymru, with Rodney Berman as leader of the Council. The Conservatives replaced Labour as the official opposition. Labour suffered badly, losing 14 councillors. Plaid Cymru gained four councillors. Three independent councillors were elected; two former Conservatives who had left the group in 2006 being joined by an additional member.
In 2012 Labour regained control of the council and remained in control following the 2017 elections.
Municipal life in Cardiff dates back to the 12th century, when Cardiff was granted borough status by the Earls of Gloucester. The offices of the mayor, aldermen, and common councillors developed during the Middle Ages.
Following The Local Government Act 1888 Cardiff was one of three Welsh towns granted county borough status, in addition to 13 Welsh county councils. In 1905, Cardiff became a city, and the borough council became a city council.
The City of Cardiff is the county town of Glamorgan. However, prior to 1974, Cardiff was a county borough in its own right and not subject to Glamorgan County Council. Council reorganisation in 1974 paired Cardiff City Council and the Vale of Glamorgan Borough Council together as district councils subject to the new county of South Glamorgan.
Further local government restructuring in 1996 to better reflect local identities resulted in Cardiff City's district council becoming a unitary authority – the present Cardiff Council. South Glamorgan County Council had wanted a new 'greater Cardiff' authority to reflect the boundaries of South Glamorgan but the Conservative government of the time decided to separate the Vale of Glamorgan, which covered a marginal Conservative parliamentary seat.
The first mayor of Cardiff is listed by the County Borough Records as Ralph "Prepositus de Kardi" who took up office in 1126. In 1835, Thomas Revel Guest became the first elected mayor of Cardiff when the first council elections were held. When Cardiff was granted city status in 1905 Cardiff's First Citizen became lord mayor. Robert Hughes, the mayor in 1904, was re-elected to become Cardiff's first lord mayor in the following year. The lord mayor was granted the right to the style "The Right Honourable". The lord mayor now bears the style "The Right Honourable the Lord Mayor of Cardiff".
In 1999 a new system was introduced whereby the leader of the council could also serve as mayor for the duration of the council without re-election. This led to Russell Goodway serving as both council leader and mayor from 1999 to 2003. From 2004 the mayoralty reverted to a separate role, elected annually.
Since 1999 the post has been held by the following councillors:
|Municipal Year||Lord Mayor||Deputy Lord Mayor|
|2019–2020||Daniel De'Ath (Lab) ||Jacqueline Parry (Lab) |
|2018–2019||Bob Derbyshire (Lab)||Daniel De'Ath (Lab)|
|2012(Sep)–2013||Derrick Morgan (Lab)||Keith Jones (Lab)|
|2012(May)–2012(Sep)||Cerys Furlong (Lab)**|
|2011–2012||Delme Bowen (Plaid)||Jayne Cowan (Ind)|
|2010–2011||Keith Hyde (Lib Dem)||Dianne Rees (Con)|
|2009–2010||Brian Griffiths (Con)||Keith Hyde (Lib Dem)|
|2008–2009||Kate Lloyd (Lib Dem)||Jaswant Singh (Plaid)|
|2007–2008||Gill Bird (Lab)||Brian Griffiths (Con)|
|2006–2007||Gareth Neale (Con)||Kate Lloyd (Lib Dem)|
|2005–2006||Freda Salway (Lib Dem)||Monica Walsh (Lab)|
|2004–2005||Jacqui Gasson (Lib Dem)||Delme Bowen (Plaid)|
|2003–2004||Gordon Houlston (Lab)|
|2002–2003||Russell Goodway (Lab)|
|2001–2002||Russell Goodway (Lab)|
|2000–2001||Russell Goodway (Lab)|
|1999–2000||Russell Goodway (Lab)|
** Following the council elections in May 2012, the position of lord mayor was unfilled, while the new Labour council attempted to split the responsibilities of the mayor between two councillors. Cllr Cerys Furlong filled the traditional mayoral roles from 17 May, as chair of the council during this period. The new mayor, Derrick Morgan, took office on 27 September after Furlong resigned her chair post when it became clear the split role proposition was losing support.
The unitary authority area is divided into 29 electoral wards. Most of these wards are coterminous with communities of the same name. The following table lists council wards, communities and associated geographical areas. Communities with a community council are indicated with a '*':
- "Cyfansoddiad Cyngor Caerdydd" (PDF). Cardiff Council website.
- Council Constitution Archived 9 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- "Councillors by political party". City of Cardiff Council. Retrieved 16 April 2020.
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "C" (part 2)
- Ruth Mosalski (8 May 2017). "Cardiff Labour group picks Huw Thomas as its new leader". Wales Online. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
- "ELECTION 2012: 'Plaid Cymru are community activists, not politicians' – Neil McEvoy". yourCardiff. 25 April 2012. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
- "Wales Factfile - Welsh Democracy" (PDF). Institute of Welsh Affairs. p. 1. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
- Alan Hooper; John Punter (Eds.) Capital Cardiff 1975–2020: Regeneration, Competitiveness and the Urban Environment, page 34. University of Wales Press (2006), ISBN 0-7083-2063-5.
- "Lord Mayor – A History". Cardiff Council. Retrieved 18 August 2007.
- "(List of) Lord Mayors of Cardiff". Cardiff Council. Retrieved 19 December 2011.[permanent dead link]
- Law, Peter (20 September 2012). "Cardiff to get Lord Mayor again after Labour council U-turn". WalesOnline. Retrieved 29 April 2013.