West Midlands County Council
Coat of arms
Type
Type
History
Established1 April 1974
Disbanded31 March 1986
Succeeded byVarious agencies
Seats104
Elections
Last election
1981
Meeting place
Council House, Victoria Square, Birmingham

West Midlands County Council (WMCC) was, from 1974 to 1986, the upper-tier administrative body for the West Midlands county, a metropolitan county in England.

History

The WMCC existed for a total of twelve years. It was established on 1 April 1974, by the Local Government Act 1972 and was abolished on 31 March 1986. It was abolished along with five other metropolitan county councils and the Greater London Council by the government of Margaret Thatcher under the Local Government Act 1985.[1]

The WMCC was a strategic authority running regional services such as transport, emergency services, and strategic planning. Elections were held to the council in 1973, 1977 and 1981. Elections were due to be held in 1985 but were cancelled due to the council's impending abolition. The Labour Party controlled the council from 1974 to 1977, with the Conservatives controlling it 1977–81. It reverted to Labour control for the last term 1981–86.[2]

Premises

County Hall, 1 Lancaster Circus, Birmingham: Council's headquarters

The first meeting of the shadow authority was held on 30 April 1973 at Council House, Birmingham.[3] Meetings were held at Council House throughout the county council's existence.[4] The county council established its main administrative offices at County Hall, 1 Lancaster Circus, in central Birmingham. Since the county council's abolition in 1986, County Hall has been occupied, but not as its headquarters, by Birmingham City Council.[5]

Political control

The first election to the council was held in 1973, initially operating as a shadow authority before coming into its powers on 1 April 1974. Political control of the council from 1974 until its abolition in 1986 was held by the following parties:[6]

Party in control Years
Labour 1974–1977
Conservative 1977–1981
Labour 1981–1986

Leadership

The leaders of the council were:

Councillor Party From To
Stan Yapp[3][7] Labour 1 Apr 1974 8 May 1977
John Taylor[8][9] Conservative 23 May 1977 Jul 1979
Gilbert Richards[10][11] Conservative Jul 1979 27 Jun 1980
Alan Hope[12][13] Conservative Jul 1980 May 1981
Gordon Morgan[14][15][16] Labour May 1981 31 Mar 1986

Council elections

Elections were held to the West Midlands County Council three times, in 1973, 1977, and 1981.[6]

Year Conservative Labour Liberal Other
1973 27 73 4 0
1977 82 18 3 1
1981 25 74 5 0

Elections were due to be held in 1985 but these were cancelled due to the council's impending abolition. Those councillors elected in 1981 had their terms of office extended until the council's abolition on 31 March 1986.[17]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Local Government Reorganisation (Pensions)". Hansard. 25 February 1986. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  2. ^ Local Elections Handbook pp. 2–3
  3. ^ a b Vertigen, Brian (1 May 1973). "Metro Council promise to Liberals over committee seats". Birmingham Post. p. 16. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  4. ^ "Big rate rise rally". Birmingham Mail. 13 May 1985. p. 5. Retrieved 10 September 2022. ...the annual meeting of the West Midlands County Council at Birmingham Council House.
  5. ^ "No. 49121". The London Gazette. 27 September 1982. p. 12502.
  6. ^ a b "Compositions calculator". The Elections Centre. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  7. ^ "Labour in vote for new chief". Coventry Evening Telegraph. 9 May 1977. p. 25. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  8. ^ Evans, John (19 May 1977). "Whizz-kid who took Tories to the top". Coventry Evening Telegraph. p. 23. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  9. ^ "Shops check attack on Metro Tories". Coventry Evening Telegraph. 24 May 1977. p. 20. Retrieved 10 September 2022. ...at last night's annual county council meeting...
  10. ^ Harrabin, Roger (28 July 1979). "City man new county Tory leader". Coventry Evening Telegraph. p. 1. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  11. ^ "County's leader dies". Birmingham Mail. 28 June 1980. p. 2. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  12. ^ Shaw, David; Bell, David (12 July 1980). "Town Hall pay storm No. 2". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  13. ^ Rotheroe, Maurice (30 April 1981). "Battle lines drawn in the bid for revenge". Sandwell Evening Mail. West Bromwich. p. 14. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  14. ^ Hudson, Nick (13 May 1981). "Hard Labour for Tories". Sandwell Evening Mail. West Bromwich. p. 25. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  15. ^ Jacobs, Bill (26 March 1986). "Doomed council's wake on the rates". Coventry Evening Telegraph. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  16. ^ "Tributes to Cradley Heath politician". Halesowen News. 19 December 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2022.
  17. ^ "Local Government (Interim Provisions) Act 1984: Section 2", legislation.gov.uk, The National Archives, 1984 c. 53 (s. 2), retrieved 10 September 2022