Cheshire West and Chester Council
Founded1 April 2009[a]
Preceded byCheshire County Council
District councils:
  • Chester City Council
  • Ellesmere Port and Neston Borough Council
  • Vale Royal Borough Council
Cllr Mark Williams, Conservative
since 3 May 2019
Chair of Council
Cllr Bob Rudd, Labour
since 2 May 2019
Leader of the Council
Cllr Louise Gittins, Labour
since 10 May 2019
Chief Executive
Andrew Lewis
Seats70 councillors[1]
Political groups
  Labour (35)
  Conservative (29)
  Independent (3)
  Liberal Democrat (2)
  Green (1)
Committees13 (excluding the cabinet)
Joint committees
Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership
Cheshire Fire Authority
Cheshire Police and Crime Panel
Shared Services Joint Committee (with Cheshire East Council)
First past the post (single-member wards)
Plurality-at-large (multi-member wards)
Last election
2 May 2019
Meeting place
Chester Town Hall, Chester
Wyvern House, Winsford

Cheshire West and Chester Council is the local authority of Cheshire West and Chester. It is a unitary authority, having the powers of a non-metropolitan county and district council combined. It provides a full range of local government services including Council Tax billing, libraries, social services, processing planning applications, waste collection and disposal, and it is a local education authority. The council was first elected on 1 May 2008, a year before coming into its legal powers on 1 April 2009. After an election in May 2019, no party holds overall control.[2]

Powers and functions

The local authority derives its powers and functions from the Local Government Act 1972 and subsequent legislation. It has a 'general power of competence' as described in the Localism Act 2011, i.e. it is permitted to act in any manner whatsoever which is not unlawful. For the purposes of local government, Cheshire West and Chester is one of the fifty-five unitary authorities in England. This means that is the only principal authority in its territorial jurisdiction, and it has the statutory powers and functions of both a non-metropolitan county and a non-metropolitan district council. The only exceptions to this are the fire and police services, which are still provided on a Cheshire-wide basis by joint boards composed of elected councillors and are funded by a Council Tax precept. Conversely, it is unnecessary for Cheshire West and Chester Council to set a precept for itself as it is also a billing authority.

Political control

Further information: Cheshire West and Chester Council elections

Since the first election of the council in 2008, political control has been held by the following parties:[3]

Executive Leader Term of office Elections won
Conservative Mike Jones 15 May 2008 – 21 May 2015 2008, 2011
Labour Samantha Dixon 21 May 2015 – 3 May 2019 2015
No overall control Louise Gittins[2] 3 May 2019 – present 2019

Council seats since 2008

Election Conservative Independent Labour Liberal Democrats Green Party
2008 55 0 13 4 0
2011 42 0 32 1 0
2015 36 1 38 0 0
2019 28 4 35 2 1
Current 28 4 35 2 1


Position Councillor Party
Leader of the Council, including Wellbeing, Culture, Leisure, Heritage and Greenspace Louise Gittins Labour
Deputy Leader of the Council, including Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport Karen Shore
Children and Families Nicole Meardon
Democracy, Workforce and Localities Paul Donovan
Housing, Regeneration and Growth Richard Beacham
Adult Social Care and Public Health Val Armstrong
Finance and Legal Carol Gahan



Further information: 2019 Cheshire West and Chester Council election

Ward Councillor Political party Council profile
Blacon Carol Gahan Labour Party Profile
Sheila Little Profile
Trish Richards Profile
Central and Grange Karen Shore Profile
Robert Bisset Profile
Chester City and The Garden Quarter Samantha Dixon Profile
Bob Rudd Profile
Martyn Delaney Profile
Christleton and Huntington Mark Williams Conservative Party Profile
Stuart Parker Profile
Davenham, Moulton and Kingsmead Helen Weltman Profile
Elton Watson Profile
Farndon Paul Roberts Liberal Democrats Profile
Frodsham Andrew Dawson Conservative Party Profile
Lynn Riley Profile
Gowy Rural Margaret Parker Conservative Party
Graham Heatley
Great Boughton Steve Collings Labour Party
Keith Boards Conservative Party
Handbridge Park Razia Daniels
Neil Sullivan
Hartford and Greenbank Phil Herbert Independent
Patricia Parkes Conservative Party
Helsby Paul Bowers Green
Lache Val Armstrong Conservative Party
Ledsham and Manor Peter Wheeler Labour Party
Christine Warner
Malpas Rachel Williams Conservative Party
Marbury Lynn Gibbon
Norman Wright
Phil Marshall
Neston Andy Williams Labour Party
Netherpool Diane Roberts
Newton and Hoole Richard Beacham
Adam Langan
Gill Watson
Northwich Winnington and Castle Kate Cernik
Robert Cernik
Northwich Witton Sam Naylor
Parkgate Martin Barker Independent
Rudheath Helen Treeby Conservative Party
Sandstone Hugo Deynem Conservative Party
Saughall and Mollington Simon Eardley
Shakerley Mark Stocks
Strawbery Gareth Gould Labour Party
Sutton Villages Paul Donovan
Nicole Meardon
Tarporley Eveleigh Moore Dutton Independent
Tarvin and Kelsall John Leather Conservative Party
Harry Tonge
Tattenhall Mike Jones
Upton Matt Bryan Labour Party
Jill Houlbrook Conservative Party
Weaver and Cuddington Gillian Edwards Independent
Paul Williams Conservative Party
Charles Fifield
Westminster Lisa Denson Labour Party
Whitby Groves Brian Jones
Whitby Park Peter Rooney
Willaston and Thornton Myles Hogg Conservative Party
Winsford Dene Mandy Clare Labour Party
Winsford Gravel Joanne Moorcroft
Winsford Over and Verdin Tommy Blackmore
Gina Lewis
Mike Baynham Conservative Party
Winsford Swanlow Mal Gaskill Liberal Democrats
Winsford Wharton Nathan Pardoe Labour Party
Wolverham Michael Edwardson


  1. ^ The first elections to the then shadow authority were held on 1 May 2008, the first meeting was held on 15 May 2008.


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b Phil McCann (22 May 2019). "Cheshire East Council elects first Labour leader". BBC. Retrieved 22 May 2019.
  3. ^ "Cheshire West and Chester". BBC News Online. 10 May 2011. Retrieved 15 February 2013.
  4. ^ "New Cheshire West and Chester Council leader promises 'stronger communities'". Northwich Guardian. Retrieved 1 June 2019.