- The City of London Corporation is the local policing body for the Square Mile.
The City of London Police, the City of London Corporation and its role as a local policing body.
Policing the Square Mile
The City of London, commonly known as the Square Mile, is a world leader in financial and business services.
The City of London Police is responsible for safety in the geographical area of the City of London. There are about 8,000 residents in the City although this number is swelled daily by an influx of some 350,000 commuters, as well as people travelling through and visitors.
About 1,100 people work for the City of London Police. Around one third of these are civilian support staff performing a wide range of professional, administrative and some operational support roles.
The City of London Corporation
The City of London Corporation is the organisation that supports and promotes the Square Mile and the businesses within it. It maintains its heritage through a variety local government and non-local government functions, making it a unique organisation. The City of London Corporation is run through the Court of Common Council – its main decision making body – which is presided over by the Lord Mayor.
The Court is made up of Aldermen and Common Councilmen who are elected from the City’s 25 wards to represent both residents’ and business interests of the City of London. The Court operates on a non-party-political basis and meets monthly to consider issues affecting local residents and workers.
The Police Authority and the Police Committee
The Court of Common Council is defined as the "police authority" for the City of London Police area in accordance with the provisions of the City of London Police Act 1839 and the Police Act 1996.
Thus, the City Corporation provides policing governance for the City of London Police, ie it is a "local policing body" whose job is:
- to make sure the City of London Police runs an effective and efficient service by holding the Commissioner to account
- to ensure value for money in the way the police is run
- set policing priorities taking into account the views of the community
The current Chairman of the Police Committee is Henry Pollard and the Deputy Chairman is Doug Barrow.
The Police Committee meets eight times a year to scrutinise the work of the City of London Police. Other City Corporation committees, such as the Audit and Risk Management Committee, complement this scrutiny function and secure value for money in all aspects of police work.
Ultimately our local communities decide how the Square Mile is policed. Both the City Corporation and the City Police organise regular events to engage with residents and businesses in the City and obtain views on what our local policing priorities should be.
To achieve outcomes that matter to local people, the City Corporation is able to draw from expertise in the wide-ranging areas of services it provides and establish effective and strong partnership working, for example, through the Safer City Partnership.
The last year has seen wide-ranging reforms of policing governance, including the introduction of directly-elected individuals — Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) — as local policing bodies for England and Wales. Those reforms did not apply to the City, although a decision was taken last year to strengthen the City’s own structures for policing governance in the light of the changes taking place elsewhere and in recognition of the increased demands on the City’s role as a police authority.
The Police Committee is currently made up of 13 members. Eleven of those are elected members of the Court of Common Council, thus ensuring a direct accountability to the electorate. The remaining two are external members, recruited through an open process.
Please see below a list of websites that may be of interest.
Freedom of Information
Access information about the City of London Corporation as a police authority under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.