Liverpool City Region Combined Authority
Liverpool City Region Combined Authority logo
Founded1 April 2014
Preceded byMerseyside Integrated Transport Authority
Steve Rotheram, Labour
since 8 May 2017
Seats7 members
Liverpool City Region Combined Authority composition
Political groups
  Labour (7)
CommitteesMerseytravel Committee
Indirect election, directly elected mayor from 2017
Last election
4 May 2017
Meeting place
Mann Island 3 Close Up.jpg
1 Mann Island, Liverpool

The Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) is the combined authority of the Liverpool City Region. The Liverpool City Region includes the City of Liverpool local authority area plus the Metropolitan Boroughs of Knowsley, St Helens, Sefton, Wirral and the Borough of Halton in North West England. It was established on 1 April 2014 by statutory instrument under the provisions of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009. Membership of the combined authority is made up of the leaders of the six principal membership authorities and the local enterprise partnership.

The LCRCA is a strategic authority with powers over transport, economic development and regeneration. Transport policy of the combined authority is delivered by the Merseytravel functional body.

The chair of the authority is Steve Rotheram, the Liverpool City Region Mayor.


Development and formation

In order to create a combined authority the local authorities in the proposed combined area must undertake a governance review and produce a scheme of their proposals. The Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership also supported them.[1]

The governance review explored four options for the strategic governance of Liverpool City Region. They were status quo/do nothing; a supervisory board; an economic prosperity board; or a combined authority. It concluded that the establishment of a combined authority would improve the "alignment, coordination and delivery of economic development and transport related initiatives" and "the decision making process will become faster and more efficient".[1]

The scheme was published on 30 September 2013. It proposed a combined authority comprising seven members - one from each constituent local authority, and one more from Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership. The combined authority, specifically through its transport committee, replaces the Merseyside Integrated Transport Authority. The Merseyside Passenger Transport Executive remains as the transport executive organisation and is formally named Merseytravel.


The proposed authority was known as the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority throughout the development process and was the name submitted to the Department for Communities and Local Government.[2] However, the government published scheme used the name 'Greater Merseyside Combined Authority'. The government consultation that followed showed strong support for a name that included 'Liverpool' and not 'Merseyside'.[3] The name was changed to Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton and Wirral Combined Authority in the draft order presented to parliament.[4] This was chosen by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) because it said the local authorities could not agree a name for the combined authority[5] and some responses to the consultation objected to the name 'Liverpool'.[6] An explanatory memorandum attached to the orders creating the combined authorities stated that any name including 'City Region' was considered "misleading and inappropriate" by the government.[7] DCLG stated that the combined authority could use any public name it wanted.[8] On 21 February 2014 it was decided by the constituent councils that the authority will use the public name of Liverpool City Region Combined Authority.[9] A motion at the inaugural meeting on 1 April 2014 proposed that the authority should adopt the name Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and this was passed unanimously.


In 2020 the Combined Authority ran a consultation program called "LCR Listens: Our Places", which gained the views of people in the city region who don't typically participate in spatial development consultations. Their work won a Planning Award 2020 for 'stakeholder engagement in planning (plan-making)'.[10]

Across September and November 2020 the combined authority started a land commission- reported as the first of its kind in England- to re-orientate the city-region's economy around community wealth building. This was in partnership with Centre for Local Economic Strategies.[11]


Constituent boroughs of the Liverpool City Region
Constituent boroughs of the Liverpool City Region
Location of the authority within England
Location of the authority within England

The membership of the combined authority is as follows:[12][13]

Constituent membership
Name Position within nominating authority Nominating authority
Steve Rotheram Metro Mayor Liverpool City Region Combined Authority
Mike Wharton Leader Halton Borough Council
Graham Morgan Leader Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council
Joanne Anderson Mayor of Liverpool Liverpool City Council
David Baines Leader St Helens Metropolitan Borough Council
Ian Maher Leader Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
Janette Williamson Leader Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council
Non-constituent membership
Asif Hamid Chair Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership
Emily Spurrell Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner Merseyside Police
Liam Robinson Chair Merseytravel
Russ Bowden Leader Warrington Borough Council
Ian Moran Leader West Lancashire Borough Council


Joe Anderson was appointed chair on 18 December 2015 after the resignation of Phil Davies.[14] Barrie Grunewald was appointed deputy chair on 19 June 2015.[15][16]

Leadership dispute

The long-term future of the new authority was left in doubt after Joe Anderson decided to seek legal advice on Liverpool City Council leaving, following his failure to be elected as its chair. Anderson was not present during the leadership vote. Other members said he allowed his personal ego and his belief he had a "God given right to chair the authority" to put it in jeopardy. The future of the authority appeared more secure following a statement by Anderson on 7 April 2014, where he made clear that the matter that caused the dispute is "closed" and that Liverpool would remain in the combined authority.[17]

The authority held its first elections for a directly elected mayor in May 2017. The election was won by Steve Rotheram.


The authority consists of several committees. Other than the Merseytravel Committee on transport matters which is detailed in the constitution and the Authority itself it is also has an Audit Committee and a Scrutiny Panel.[12]

Merseytravel Committee

The Merseytravel Committee acts as the transport authority, with Merseytravel as the executive agency.


  1. ^ a b "Proposal to establish a combined authority for Greater Merseyside" (PDF). Department for Communities and Local Government. November 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  2. ^ "Liverpool City Region Review of Strategic Governance and Scheme for the Establishment of a Combined Authority" (PDF). Halton Borough Council. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2014. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  3. ^ "Summary of responses to consultations on proposals to establish the Combined Authorities" (PDF). Department for Communities and Local Government. February 2014. Retrieved 14 February 2014.
  4. ^ "The Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton and Wirral Combined Authority Order 2014 (Draft)" (PDF). Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  5. ^ Marc, Waddington (17 February 2014). "Merseyside 'super council' to be called Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton and Wirral Combined Authority". Liverpool Echo. Archived from the original on 23 February 2021.
  6. ^ Bounds, Andrew (18 February 2014). "Merseyside supercouncil's lengthy name ridiculed". Financial Times.((cite news)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "Explanatory Memorandum" (PDF).
  8. ^ "DCLG accused of 'silliness' over combined authority names". 21 February 2014.
  9. ^ "Establishment of a Combined Authority for the Liverpool City Region" (PDF). 21 February 2014. Retrieved 22 February 2014.
  10. ^ Manning, Craig. "'LCR Listens: Our Places' consultation wins prestigious honour". Wirral Globe. Newsquest. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  11. ^ Edgar, Laura. "England's 'first' land commission launched in Liverpool | The Planner". The Planner. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  12. ^ a b Constitution of the Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton and Wirral Combined Authority, 14 February 2014
  13. ^ Piper, John (4 February 2015). "West Lancs Council team up with neighbouring authorities to boost local economy". Southport Visiter. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
  14. ^ "Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson elected chair of city region". BBC News. 18 December 2015.
  15. ^ Waddington, Marc (1 April 2014). "New chair of Merseyside 'super council' warns egos must be put to one side to ensure region's growth". Liverpool Echo.
  16. ^ "Councillor Barrie Grunewald voted the new deputy chair of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority". St Helens Star. 19 June 2015.
  17. ^ Smulian, Mark (7 April 2014). "Mayor backs down over combined authority | News | Local Government Chronicle". Retrieved 7 September 2015.