Writing to your Councillor(s)

You’ve been following Living Streets North Tyneside for some time now, and you’ve been wanting to get involved, but you’ve been hesitant as to how you’ll take the next step and contacting your elected representatives.

Even the most seasoned of Councillor-contacting veterans amongst us started where you are, and hopefully this guide will aid you through the process.

Step 1 – What do I want to say?

To start you off, we’ll ask our Councillors what walking and cycling schemes they have contributed to over the past two years, and what they’re going to do over the next year.

For those Councillors that are planning on standing for re-election this year, the latter question may help form what platform they are standing on.

Step 2 – Who are my Councillors?

The North Tyneside Council website provides multiple ways in which you can find your Ward Councillors, but the most straight-forward is by supplying your postcode.

https://democracy.northtyneside.gov.uk/mgFindMember.aspx

The Find Councillor web page from North Tyneside Council's website.
The results of a postcode search within North Tyneside Council “Find Councillor” page

This method helps identify what Ward you are within, and also who your three Councillors are.

In order to get your Councillors’ email addresses, you need to go into each profile to retrieve them.

The details of the councillor page from North Tyneside Council website.
An example page of a Councillor within North Tyneside Council’s website

You can pick up your Councillor’s email address from the Contact Information section.

Use the Other Councillors representing this Ward section to retrieve the other Councillors’ email addresses.


Step 3 – Compose your Message

Open up your email software of choice and insert the email addresses of the Councillors into the To… field.  Copy (CC… or BCC…) livingstreetsnt@gmail.com, if you want to keep Living Streets North Tyneside updated, or show visibility to your Councillors about interested parties for your question.

We’ll keep the Subject simple as Walking and Cycling Schemes, so it’s clear what your writing about up-front.

We’ll address the Councillors by their title and surname, to keep things formal on initial contact.

We’ll then provide details of what it is we are asking for from our Councillors, and complete the email by including your name and address.

Dear Cllrs A, B and C,

I am writing to you to request some information on Walking and Cycling schemes within <Ward Name>.

Please can you let me know what Walking and Cycling Schemes you have helped contribute to within <Ward Name> in 2020 and 2021?

Please can you let me know what Walking and Cycling Schemes you are helping to put together within <Ward Name> in 2022?

Yours sincerley

A Citizen
1A Main Street
Beatown
NE12 5AB

An image containing the text for the example email.
A draft email, ready to be sent to Councillors

We’re using this as an example, but you may wish to add something a bit more personal to the area in which you live. It could include something that makes the area safer for your children to walk/cycle safely, or it could be specific location in your Ward that requires urgent attention, eg skate park, play park.

Step 4 – Send your Email

That’s it, you’ve sent your first email to your Councillors. 👏

What’s Next?

It’s worth pointing out you may not get a response straight away, a response by email, or a response at all, but it does help provide an indication on how interested your Councillors are in Active Travel Schemes in your Ward.

If you don’t receive a response, you can Reply to All your initial email and politely ask for a response.  We recommend waiting two weeks (10 working days).

An image showing the reminder text to the councillors.
An example of a reminder email to Councillors

Keep us informed of how you get on.

Looking for Something Else?

If you would like us to produce a blog about something, please pass on your ideas to livingstreetsnt@gmail.com and we’ll see what we can do.
Alternatively, if you would like to produce a blog you think others would find helpful, contact us at the same address.

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