Newham London Borough Council

Newham Council
Coat of arms or logo
Chair of Council
Winston Vaughan, Labour
Rokhsana Fiaz, Labour
since March 2018
Chief Executive
Abi Gbago [1]
since September 2023
Seats66 councillors[3]
Political groups
Administration (60)
  Labour (60)
Opposition (6)
  Newham Independents (3)[2]
  Green (2)
  Independent (1)
Joint committees
East London Waste Authority
Block vote
Last election
5 May 2022
Next election
7 May 2026
Meeting place
Newham Town Hall
Council Website

Newham London Borough Council /ˈnjəm/ is the local authority for the London Borough of Newham. It is a London borough council, one of 32 in the United Kingdom capital of London. The council is unusual in that its executive function is controlled by a directly elected mayor of Newham, currently Rokhsana Fiaz.[4] The council was created by the London Government Act 1963 and replaced two local authorities: East Ham Borough Council, West Ham Borough Council and also took responsibilities from small areas covered by Barking Borough Council and Woolwich Metropolitan Borough Council.


A map showing the wards of Newham since 2002

There have previously been a number of local authorities responsible for the Newham 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 Newham on 1 April 1965. Newham replaced East Ham Borough Council, West Ham Borough Council, Barking Borough Council (for land west of the River Roding) and Woolwich Metropolitan Borough Council (for land north of the River Thames). West Ham was a county borough (which meant that its council had the functions of both a county and a borough) from 1889 and East Ham gained that status in 1915. It was previously a non-county borough and between 1894 and 1904 it was governed by East Ham Urban District Council. Before 1900 Woolwich was governed by the Woolwich Local Board of Health. Barking was governed by Barking Town Urban District Council from 1894 to 1931.[5] Local boards were formed for Woolwich in 1852, West Ham in 1856, East Ham in 1878 and Barking Town in 1882.[6]

It was envisaged that through the London Government Act 1963 Newham 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. As an outer London borough council it has been an education authority since 1965. This arrangement lasted until 1986 when Newham London Borough Council gained responsibility for some services that had been provided by the Greater London Council, such as waste disposal. 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.[7]

Powers and functions

The local authority derives its powers and functions from the London Government Act 1963 and subsequent legislation, and has the powers and functions of a London borough council. It sets council tax and as a billing authority also collects precepts for Greater London Authority functions and business rates.[8] It sets planning policies which complement Greater London Authority and national policies, and decides on almost all planning applications accordingly. It is a local education authority and is also responsible for council housing, social services, libraries, waste collection and disposal, traffic, and most roads and environmental health.[9]

Lender option borrower option loans

In 2015, Newham London Borough Council had £563 million of long term lender option borrower option loans (LOBOs), more than anywhere else in the country. It pays annual interest of up to 7.6%.[10][11]

Summary results of elections

Main article: Newham London Borough Council elections

The council has been controlled by the Labour Party since it was first elected in 1964.[12][13][14]

Council term 2022-2026

Prior to the 2022 election, but after nominations were submitted, Labour candidate for Canning Town South, Belgica Guaña, was suspended from the Labour Party, pending an investigation. Due to the timing, Guaña appeared on the ballot paper as a Labour candidate and was elected.[15] Cllr Guaña is currently listed as an Independent councillor, having been removed from the Labour Group following investigation by the party.[16]


  1. ^ "Newham Council's new Chief Executive, Abi Gbago starts role today". Newham Council. Retrieved 18 September 2023.
  2. ^ "Your Councillors by Party". Newham Council. Retrieved 28 November 2023.
  3. ^ "Your Councillors by Party". Newham Council. Retrieved 28 November 2023.
  4. ^ Long, Rhiannon. "Local Elections: Newham elects Rokhsana Fiaz to be its mayor". Newham recorder.
  5. ^ Youngs, Frederic (1979). Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England. Vol. I: Southern England. London: Royal Historical Society. ISBN 0-901050-67-9.
  6. ^ "Barking Town Local Minute Books". Retrieved 27 December 2022.
  7. ^ Leach, Steve (1998). Local Government Reorganisation: The Review and its Aftermath. Routledge. p. 107. ISBN 978-0714648590.
  8. ^ "Council Tax and Business Rates Billing Authorities". Council Tax Rates. Retrieved 8 April 2020.
  9. ^ "Local Plan Responses – within and outside London". Mayor of London. 12 November 2015. Retrieved 9 April 2020.
  10. ^ How Councils Blow Your Millions: Channel 4 UK Dispatches transmitted 6 July 2015 - News release
  11. ^ Joel Benjamin (October 2014). "Newham Council and the LOBO loan scandal". Contributoria. Archived from the original on 29 July 2015.
  12. ^ "London Borough of Newham Election Results 1964-2010" (PDF). Elections Centre. Plymouth University. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  13. ^ "London Borough Council Elections 23 May 2014" (PDF). London Datastore. London Residuary Body. Retrieved 19 November 2019.
  14. ^ "London Borough Council Elections 3 May 2018" (PDF). London Datastore. London Residuary Body. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  15. ^ Felix Pope (8 May 2022). "Newham councillor who shared 'Holocaust Hoax' article re-elected". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 23 December 2022.
  16. ^ "Councillor details". Councillor Belgica Guaña. 19 December 2022.