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County Association Training Courses

Training courses for Clerks, Council Officers and Councillors covering all aspects of council communications, community engagement and GDPR/FOI compliance. These sessions are provided in partnership with your County Association.

Browse our training courses

Training courses for Clerks, Council Officers and Councillors covering all aspects of council communications, community engagement and GDPR/FOI compliance. These sessions are provided in partnership with your County Association.

Book a place on our training courses

Once you’ve made your booking, you’ll receive an email confirmation with more information. Your County Association will then invoice your council for your place on the course. Courses are held on Zoom and last between 1.5 – 2 hours. If you have any questions, please email

Local council communications and community engagement training courses


Communicating with your community Part 1: Creating a communications strategy

It’s important for councils of all shapes and sizes to create a public communications strategy that supports the delivery of your council’s priorities, aims and objectives. In this session we explore latest best practice for creating an effective, sustainable and resource-appropriate communications strategy that fits with the needs and aspirations of your council.


Communicating with your community Part 2: Engaging with your community

This session will help you consider how to implement your communications strategy and engage with your community. We explore how councils can communicate and engage, as well as building sustainable conversations. Discover the tools, strategies and techniques needed to better promote your own messages but also to better respond to the voices within your local community.


How councils can engage effectively with young people in their communities

Young people are often a hard-to-reach demographic for councils to engage with. In this session we explore what we actually mean by the term ‘young people’, what issues matter to different groups of younger people, how to effectively reach and engage them, both online and offline, and how to build partnerships with youth-focused organisations in your area.


How councils can recruit a more diverse pool of local councillors

It is increasingly challenging to find people who are willing to put their names forward either at election time or to be co-opted. We explore effective ways councils and councillors can engage people over time, building up their awareness and interest in the work of the council, in order to better promote and demystify the role of a councillor.


Get the most from local and regional media

From local newspapers and magazines to regional TV and radio, traditional media provides councils a platform to communicate with residents, but engaging with journalists can be daunting. We explore how you can build effective two-way relationships with journalists, how to write effective press releases and how to get regular coverage in your local and regional media.


Crisis communications for local councils

We never know when a crisis could strike. From local flooding to a council meeting going viral there are many ways in which councils can find themselves in the eye of the media storm. This session takes participants through the detail of preparing for a crisis no matter what form it may take. Passing on expert tips and guidance on being as prepared as you can be should the worst happen.

Local council social media and digital communications training courses


Canva Part 1: Getting started (new!)

This training session is designed to help councils get started with Canva and to get to grips with its essential features. Discover how councils can use Canva to create content for a variety of community engagement purposes, including printed material as well as for websites and social media. We will work through how to create new designs and how to make use of templates, how to add text and images, and customise their designs.


Canva Part 2: Advanced (new!)

This training session is designed for councils who already have experience with Canva and want to learn its more advanced features and techniques. Participants will learn how to use advanced tools to create complex designs and layouts as well as how to set up your council’s brand. We will also explore how to integrate Canva with your social media, how to make use of its scheduling features and using Canva to create and edit video content.


Social Media Part 1: Getting started with social media for local councils

Social media provides councils with an opportunity to significantly enhance their communications. Discover how to get started on social media and how to get the fundamentals right. In this session we explore how to create a social media strategy, how to get the most out of Facebook in particular, and how to make use of time-saving tools and techniques save councils time and effort.


Social media Part 2: Advanced social media strategies and tactics for local councils

Many councils look to use a range of social media platforms in order to increase their digital reach into the community. In this session we  explore how to get the most from each of the key social media platforms and how to ensure your social media content is delivering on your council’s communications objectives. We also introduce how to effectively use social media advertising.


Councillors training: Social media skills for parish and town councillors

Social media provides councillors an opportunity to engage and communicate with their residents. Building up two-way conversations through the power of digital platforms has never been easier, but it can be tricky to get started and to know where to focus your time and effort. We walk you through the essential ways to get the most out of key social media platforms as a local councillor, what issues to be mindful of, and we provide top tips to engage with your residents.

Local council interpersonal skills and communication skills training courses


Dealing with difficult people and conversations in our local councils

Managing our professional relationships within our local councils is important, yet it can still be a challenge to deal with people who are 'difficult' and to face challenging situations. In this session we explore practical techniques to manage difficult conversations and situations in a council environment.


Councillors training: chairing council and public meetings effectively

This session is designed for councillors, regardless of whether you are an experienced chairperson or whether you are new to the role. We explore how to effectively prepare for meetings, how to get the most out of the meetings you chair and from other councillors, and how to deal with tricky situations.


Emotional Intelligence and Resilience in Practice for Clerks, Officers and Councillors

This practical workshop will help council officers and councillors form a better understanding of where our behaviour comes from and what resilience means for us in the context of our roles within the council. We'll consider different scenarios and how we might respond to them and we'll explore strategies to manage a range of situations.

Local council data protection and Freedom of Information training courses


Data Protection for councils Part 1: Foundations & theory

In an ever-evolving legislative landscape, it is vital that councils ensure they have the most up-to-date understanding of their data protection obligations. This introductory session walks councils through the theory and core principles of GDPR and related data protection legislation, and we explain what policies, practices and processes councils need to have in place.


Data Protection for councils Part 2: Accountability and lawfulness

Our second data protection session deep dives into how councils are required to demonstrate accountability with UK GDPR. We consider the different lawful bases for how councils process personal data and we how to get started with creating the different policies and documents required, including your Privacy Notice, Legitimate Interest and Data Protection Impact Assessments.


Data Protection for councils Part 3: Data subject rights and information security

Our third data protection session considers how to deal with data subject rights requests, including Subject Access Requests. We explore specific steps to take to ensure you are compliant with the legislation, and we consider what exemptions may apply, and when. We also explore the importance of Information Security for local councils and what this means in practice.


Councillors training: Data protection training for parish and town councillors

 Whether you are an experienced councillor or have only recently been elected, it is vital that you understand how data protection legislation sits with your role as an elected member. This session will help you understand your legal obligations to yourself and to your council and how to get things right. as well as introducing Freedom of Information and what this means for councillors.


Freedom of Information for local councils: obligations, procedures and exemptions

This course looks at what requirements and obligations local councils have when it comes to Freedom of Information. We look at what policies and procedures councils should have in place, how to ensure officers and councillors are aware of their obligations and what steps to take when you get an FOI request, and what exemptions may potentially apply and when.

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