Public participation in the Health and Wellbeing Board

This scheme gives you an opportunity to raise issues with the health and wellbeing board.

All issues raised under this scheme are given careful consideration. It may not be possible to resolve issues to the satisfaction of everyone, in every case. However, we will make sure that issues are considered fairly.

What you can do

You may use this scheme to either submit a petition or ask a question at a board meeting.

Democratic Services can provide advice on the content of submissions where requested.


A petition must be submitted at least 7 working days before a meeting. It must be given to Democratic Services by this deadline. 

This is to allow enough time for the petition to be added to the agenda papers for the meeting and circulated. 

There must be at least 10 signatures for a petition to be submitted.

The subject matter of a petition must be something that is within the Board’s responsibilities. This includes matters of interest to the Board as a key stakeholder in improving the health and wellbeing of communities.

Submissions will be heard in the order they were received. The Chair may group together similar matters.

Where there is insufficient time to deal with all submissions received, the Chair will decide which will be dealt with at the meeting.

Any submissions not dealt with will be given a written response as soon as possible after the meeting.


Meetings include 15 minutes for questions from the public. If a member of the public would like to ask a question they must either:

  • arrive 15 minutes before the start of any in-person meeting and provide the clerk with their name, address, and the question they want to ask
  • send an email at least 2 hours before the start of the meeting to the clerk at with their name, address and question to be asked

The Board is currently meeting virtually, so anyone wishing to speak should contact the clerk in good time.

The subject matter of questions must relate to an item on the agenda for that particular meeting.

At the meeting, the Chair will invite each member of the public to put their question at the appropriate point in the agenda. This may be addressed to the Chair of the Board, who will decide which Board member is best placed to provide a response. If you are unable to attend the meeting, you can ask the clerk to read your question out for you.

The question must be about an issue that falls within the remit of the board’s work. A questioner may put a supplementary question, without notice, to the board member who replied to their original question. This question must arise directly out of the original question or the reply. The Chair may reject a supplementary question on any of the grounds outlined below.

Time limits

No individual question will be allowed more than 3 minutes at a meeting. This rule will be strictly enforced in fairness to all those who wish to address the meeting.

The time allowed at a meeting to hear and deal with submissions from the public is decided by the Chair, or by the meeting itself, but does not normally exceed 15 minutes. This takes into account the issues to be raised in the submissions, the number of submissions and the other business of the meeting.

Any question which is not dealt with during the allocated time will be dealt with by a written answer. This will be sent to the questioner and copied to all board members.

Matters outside the scheme

Some matters fall outside the scope of this scheme. These are:

  • individual circumstances where it would not be appropriate for details to be aired in open session
  • applications for legal consents where alternative procedures exist for the public to offer views
  • other proposals of any kind which have been formally published and where specific arrangements are made for the public to express their views

The Chair may also reject a submission if it:

  • is not about a matter for which the board has a responsibility or which affects the Bracknell Forest area
  • is defamatory, vexatious, frivolous or offensive
  • is substantially the same as a submission which has already been put at that meeting or another meeting held within the preceding 6 months
  • is about the subject of an appeal or review procedure that has not yet been concluded
  • needs the disclosure of confidential or exempt information

Support for the public

The prospect of speaking at a formal meeting may be daunting. Support is available to those who wish to use this scheme. The councillors and officers present will treat members of the public with courtesy and respect.

Please be aware that while the public are welcome to attend board meetings where open business is discussed, they may not speak at the meeting unless using the methods in this scheme.