What do Police and Crime Commissioners do?

Polling cards have been hitting doormats across the region as a reminder that local elections are approaching on the 6 May.

This year, after being postponed 12 months due to Covid, voters will be asked to cast their ballot for a Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) - or if you live in Greater Manchester, the Metro Mayor who also looks after policing.

PCC's were brought in a decade ago but suffered the worst turnout for any nationwide elections ever.

So do we know any more about who they are and what they do, 10 years on? 

Their powers are quite far reaching, including:

  • Appointing the Chief Constable and holding them to account

  • Setting police priorities

  • Commissioning crime prevention schemes and victim support

  • Setting the police budget (and how much residents pay in council tax)

Association of Police and Crime Commissioners

The Police and Crime Commissioner also has the power to fire Chief Constables if they're not performing.

The PCC is accountable to a panel made up of councillors, but ultimately to the public who can vote them out when elections come round again.

The Bridewell pub in Liverpool which was a former police station

But one of the main issues is public engagement, speaking to drinkers at a former police station in Liverpool, many could not remember having voted for one in the past or indeed exactly what they do.

"They have some sort of oversight," one woman said, "I know vaguely," came another response as well as "I've seen one in Line of Duty."

With policing very much in the spotlight at the moment this is really the main way the public can get involved and have a say on what the priorities in their area should be.

The following candidates for each area are presented in alphabetical order.

Cheshire candidates

  • Jo Conchie - Liberal Democrats

  • John Dwyer - Conservative

  • Nick Goulding - Reform UK

  • David Keane - Labour

Greater Manchester candidates (Metro Mayor position)

  • Nick Buckley - Reform UK

  • Andy Burnham - Labour

  • Laura Evans - Conservative

  • Marcus Farmer - Independent

  • Melanie Horrocks - Green

  • Simon Lepori - Liberal Democrats

  • Alec Marvel - Independent

  • Stephen Morris - English Democrats

  • David Sutcliffe - Independent

Lancashire candidates

  • James Barker - Reform UK

  • Neil Darby - Liberal Democrats

  • Clive Grunshaw - Labour

  • Andrew Snowden - Conservative

Merseyside candidates

  • Kris Brown - Liberal Democrats

  • Emily Spurrell - Labour

  • Bob Teesdale - Conservative