Cheshire Police and Crime Panel

The Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 introduced significant changes in police governance and accountability, in particular the introduction of directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners and a Police and Crime Panel for each force area.

The Panel maintains a regular check and balance on the performance of the Commissioner. The Cheshire Police and Crime Panel is made up of ten local councillors from across the county, plus three co-opted independent members.

The Panel may co-opt additional members including extra councillors provided the panel does not exceed 20 members and the Home Secretary agrees to the increased size of the panel.

The Police and Crime Panel’s responsibility for the management of complaints


The Police and Crime Commissioner is elected to make sure that policing in Cheshire meets the needs of the community. His role is to oversee how the county is policed, the police budget, the amount of Council Tax you pay for policing and the information that you receive about what the Police are doing. 

The Commissioner has to be satisfied that the Chief Constable has in place a system to enable complaints against police officers to be dealt with efficiently and fairly, it is not part of his role to look at individual complaints against the Police, although since 1 February 2020 he has had a role in the review of certain complaints.

The Police and Crime Panel has established a Complaints Management Sub Committee to manage its responsibility for complaints. It  does not deal with complaints involving the conduct / behaviour of Police Officers or the delivery of operational policing matters. You will find information on how to make a complaint about the Police on the Cheshire Constabulary website.

The Complaints Management Sub Committee is not an appeals body for complaints against Cheshire Constabulary or the Chief Constable and has no legal power to look into, investigate or order actions to be taken in such cases.

If you wish to make a complaint about the Police and Crime Commissioner, you will need to tell the Complaints Management Sub Committee what the Commissioner himself has done or not done which has had an impact on you. You will need to provide as much evidence as you can. 

Any correspondence about complaints should be addressed to martin.r.smith@cheshireeast.gov.uk

If you are sending information by post it should be addressed to:

Cheshire Police and Crime Panel
Cheshire East Council
Democratic Services and Governance
c/o Municipal Buildings
Crewe Cheshire CW1 2BJ                                       

If your complaint is about the actions of a member of the Commissioner’s staff, you should address your complaint to: 

Chief of Staff
Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner 
Stockton Heath Police Station
Grappenhall Road Stockton Heath
Warrington WA4 2AF
Email:police.crime.commissioner@cheshire.pnn.police.uk

If your complaint is in relation to the Chief of Staff, your complaint should, in the first instance, be referred to the Police & Crime Commissioner at the above address.

Read the Complaints Management Sub Committee Terms of Reference (PDF, 165KB) to find out more about how the Complaints Management Sub Committee works and for detailed information on the Panel’s Complaints procedure

A simplified complaints procedure flow chart (PDF, 79KB) shows how the Complaints procedure operates.

Please be very careful when sending confidential information, ensuring you are using the correct address and do not send original copies of any documents. 

The current Complaints procedure came into operation on 1 November 2020.

Public participation at panel meetings

Panel meetings are held in public, anyone can attend. Details on how to attend will be found on the agenda for the meeting. Members of the public may speak and ask questions at Panel meeting. 

Further information on public speaking (PDF, 111KB)

Statement on the Emergency response to Coronavirus

The Cheshire Police and Crime Panel are the public body responsible for guiding, supporting and scrutinising the Police & Crime Commissioner. Our function is a mandated role reinforced by legislation. Whilst we commit to this public duty we see ourselves as very much a part of the policing family, whose collective effort is: “To make Cheshire safer”. The panel comprises of both locally elected Councillors and independent members, appointed to the Panel.

At this time of national emergency the Cheshire Police and Crime Panel wishes to express our support and commitment to the Commissioner, Cheshire Constabulary and Special Constabulary for their cohesive work with the NHS, Fire and Rescue Service and Local Government. The challenge of responding to the pandemic caused by Covid-19 is considerable, as are the new powers in the Coronavirus Act 2020. We are working in difficult and unprecedented circumstances. These are exceptional times for all public services and essential businesses in maintaining effective supply chains. I would include in this the many thousands who have volunteered in Cheshire. 

During the Coronavirus emergency the Panel will continue to meet, with virtual meetings being held using Microsoft Teams.

The Panel is firmly of the view that, public oversight and scrutiny of the Commissioner and the Constabulary is of vital importance. We will be stepping up our efforts to support and guide these most essential functions and powers during these challenging times”.

I want to take this opportunity to urge the public to assist us in tackling the spread of Covid-19 and adhere to the medical advice being issued by the Government and Public Health England. Such action will help prevent the spread of the virus, reducing pressure on our emergency services and the NHS.

Evan Morris MBE

Chairman, Cheshire Police and Crime Panel

Consultative Meeting of the Police on Crime Panel

At the start of the Coronavirus pandemic the Panel met informally with the Police and Crime Commissioner. A video of the meeting can be viewed at:

Review and Scrutiny 

Review and Scrutiny of the Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s decisions and actions in relation to the disciplinary action taken against former Chief Constable, Simon Byrne.

If you require the above report in an accessible format please email Martin.R.Smith@cheshireeast.gov.uk

2020/21 Police Precept

The Chairman of the Panel has received the attached letter from the Commissioner (PDF, 607KB) at its meeting on 7 February 2020 the Panel will discuss the Commissioner’s proposed precept for 2020/21. The meeting of the Police and Crime Panel can be watched live via the webcast on the Cheshire West and Chester Council website.

2019/20 Police Precept

The Commissioner is required to set an annual budget and precept (the Commissioner’s element of Council Tax). A report from the Commissioner was considered by the Police and Crime Panel at its meeting on 8 February 2019. The Commissioner’s proposed precept was supported without qualification or comment. 

2018/19 Police precept

The Commissioner is required to set an annual budget and precept (the Commissioner’s element of Council Tax). A report from the Commissioner was considered by the Police and Crime Panel at its meeting on 2 February.

Confirmation hearings

The Cheshire Police and Crime Panel held Confirmation hearings on:

Friday  8 February 2019  - when they met with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s candidate for the position of Chief Constable. The outcome of that meeting is that the Chairman of the Panel, Mr Robert Fousert, has written to the Commissioner recommending that his candidate, Mr Darren Martland, should be appointed. A copy of the letter and the Commissioner’s reply can be viewed below:

Monday 16 July 2018 - when they met with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s candidate for the position of Head of Finance , Operations and Governance. The outcome of that meeting is that the Chairman of the Panel, Mr Robert Fousert, has written to the Commissioner recommending that his candidate, Ms Clare Hodgson, should be appointed. A copy of the letter and the Commissioner’s reply can be viewed below:

Wednesday 22 February 2017 - where they met with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s candidate for the position of Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner. The outcome of that meeting is that the Chairman of the Panel, Councillor Howard Murray has written to the Commissioner indicating that the Panel were of the view that his candidate, Councillor Sareda Dirir meets the minimum standard required in order for her to fulfil the role of Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire.

Wednesday 12 July 2017 - where it met with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s candidate for the position of Chief of Staff. The Confirmation Hearing can be viewed on the webcast from 12 July below. The outcome of that meeting was that Councillor Howard Murray, Chairman of the Panel wrote to the Commissioner indicating that the Panel were of the view that they could not support the appointment of the Commissioner’s candidate. A copy of the letter, together with the Commissioner’s reply can be viewed below:

Current webcasts

Please Tweet your questions to the Panel @CheshirePCPanel.

Responsibilities of the panel

  • To consider the Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s proposed council tax precept for policing, with the power to veto
  • To consider the Commissioner’s proposed appointment of a Chief Constable, with the power to veto
  • The ability to review the police and crime plan and annual report
  • To request reports and call the Police and Crime Commissioner to attend its meetings
  • To consider complaints against the Police and Crime Commissioner of a non-criminal nature.

The Panel will not scrutinise the performance of the Constabulary - that is the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner. The Panel will only scrutinise the actions and decisions of the Commissioner.

Panel rules of procedure

Members of the Cheshire Police and Crime Panel

List of Cheshire Police and Crime Panel members
AuthorityMember

Cheshire East Council

  • Councillor Laura Jeuda
  • Councillor Paul Findlow
  • Councillor Mick Warren

Cheshire West and Chester Council

  • Councillor Robert Bisset
  • Councillor Martyn Delaney
  • Councillor Lynn Riley

Halton Borough Council

  • Councillor Norman Plumpton Walsh
  • Councillor Dave Thompson

Warrington Borough Council

  • Councillor Peter Walker
  • Councillor Jan Davidson

Statutory Co-opted Member

  • Mrs Sally Hardwick

Statutory Co-opted Member

  • Mr Robert Fousert

Additional Co-opted Member

  • Mr Evan Morris

Publications and Submissions

In January 2020 the Panel made a submission to the Barbour Review of Policing. See more information on the review.

Letters received by Chairman from the Home Office 

The Chairman has received the attached letters from the Home Office.