William joined the SDP in 1982 and campaigned in general elections, local elections and by-elections throughout the 1980’s. By 1989 he was on the SDP’s approved list of Parliamentary Candidates. William later spent four years in the Conservative party, becoming a District Councillor in 1999 and serving on Tynedale Council until 2003. A former Parliamentary Candidate, he presently serves on Corbridge Parish Council in Northumberland. William became leader of the Social Democrats in early 2018 and was re-elected in March 2020 obtaining 89% of votes returned by members. William holds first and Masters degrees in Urban Planning and Property Management respectively and read Philosophy at Durham University at Postgraduate level.