Save local services: How is £1 of council funding spent?

Councils provide hundreds of services in your area; looking after vulnerable people, keeping the streets clean and running leisure centres. But the future financial sustainability of local services is on a cliff edge.


Council budgeted spending by service as a share of total net revenue service spending, expressed as pence in the pound  2012-13. Children's Social Care: 17p, Adult Social Care: 39p, Environmental and regulatory services: 13p, Central services: 8p, Housing services: 6p, Cultural and related services: 7p, Planning and development services: 3p, Highways and transport services: 7p
Source: LGA analysis of Revenue Account budget data published by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Council budgeted spending by service as a share of total net revenue service spending, expressed as pence in the pound  2022-23. Children's Social Care: 24p, Adult Social Care: 43p, Environmental and regulatory services: 11p, Central services: 6p, Housing services: 4p, Cultural and related services: 5p, Planning and development services: 2p, Highways and transport services: 5p
Source: LGA analysis of Revenue Account budget data published by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and Office for National Statistics (ONS).

  1. In 2014/15 there was a definitional change in the data for children's social care which increased this service’s share of spend by around 2 percentage points.  
  2. Housing services refers to the general fund revenue account and excludes the housing revenue account. 
  3. Data was included for principal councils only. This includes county councils, shire district councils, shire unitary authorities, London borough councils (including the City of London) and metropolitan district councils. 
  4. NHS transfers to adult social care are excluded as they are not included in the budget data published by DLUHC. 
  5. Council spending on education services and other services has been excluded. 
  6. Public Health is excluded because it was not the responsibility of councils in 2012/13. It has been funded through a ringfenced grant to councils since 2013/14.