David Keane, the Police & Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, is offering residents an exciting volunteering opportunity to join the Independent Custody Visiting Scheme in Cheshire. Independent Custody Visiting is a statutory requirement of Police & Crime Commissioners, providing independent oversight of the detention of people in police custody. Independent Custody Visitor (ICV) recommendations can require the police to make improvements for the welfare of detainees and, therefore, they play a valuable role in maintaining public confidence in this important area of policing. ICVs are members of the local community who volunteer to check on the welfare of people detained in police custody.

Between April 2017 and March 2018, Cheshire ICVs made a total of 150 unannounced visits to custody suites across Cheshire offering to check on the welfare of 1,189 detainees in police custody. During such visits, a total of 596 individuals consented to be visited by ICVs.

David said “Independent Custody Visitors will gain a unique insight into police custody and provide the public with confidence that the police treat individuals lawfully and with respect when detained in police custody. ICVs will act as ‘critical friends’ providing me with invaluable feedback on the welfare of detainees from an independent, impartial and non-discriminatory view of all parties involved in the custody visiting process.”

Stella Lappin, Independent Custody Visitor, said: “My role as an ICV helps me put something back into the community; I feel like I’m making a real difference. As part of the role, I visit custody suites to ensure detainees are treated with respect. ICVs are non-judgemental and ensure that all those in custody are treated fairly.”

Successful applicants will be appointed to one of three Panels and will undertake random, unannounced visits of police cells to ensure those individuals detained are being cared for appropriately by checking on the conditions and talking with willing detainees. An ICV will be expected to make a visit once every six weeks at one of the following custody suites:

  • Eastern Area Panel - Custody Suite in Middlewich
  • Northern Area Panel - Custody Suite in Sandymoor, Runcorn
  • Western Area Panel - Custody Suite in Blacon, Chester

There are no qualifications needed but applicants must:

  • Be over 18 years of age;
  • Live or work in Cheshire;
  • Be a resident in the UK for at least three years;
  • Demonstrate excellent oral and written communication skills;
  • Demonstrate sufficient time, flexibility and commitment to carry out the role of a custody visitor;
  • Be independent from the police, impartial and work in a non-discriminatory way; and
  • Be able to maintain confidentiality.

Please see Person Specification for additional criteria.

For additional information about the role of an Independent Custody Visitor, please see below ‘Frequently Asked Questions’, a ‘Person Specification’ and ‘Role Description’. Should you require any additional information, please contact the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner on 01606 364103.

Application Form

Application Form (pdf)

Frequently Asked Questions

Person specification

Role description

To apply for the role of Independent Custody Visitor, please complete the application form above and return to the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner via e-mail or post. 

E-mail: [email protected]

Post: FAO Matt Walton, Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner for Cheshire
Stockton Heath Police Station, Grappenhall Road, Stockton Heath, Warrington, WA4 2AF