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Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs) are ordinary members of the local community who help to ensure that detainees are treated appropriately.

Warning: This is archived material and may be out of date. The Metropolitan Police Authority has been replaced by the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (MOPC).

See the MOPC website for further information.

Independent Custody Visitors


ICVs are ordinary members of the local community. Working as part of a local Panel they help the MPA, which oversees custody visiting in London, to ensure that detainees are treated appropriately. ICVs play a valuable role in maintaining public confidence in this important area of policing.

What do ICVs do?

Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs) are ordinary members of the local community appointed to make sure that the welfare of people detained in police stations is maintained.

They call at police stations unannounced and write short reports about their visit. Their recommendations can require the police to make improvements for the welfare of detainees.

Get involved

Interested in becoming an Independent Custody Visitor in London?

The MPA is seeking to recruit visitors from as many different backgrounds and communities as possible to ensure the scheme reflects London’s diversity.

London ICV Scheme

The London Independent Custody Visiting Scheme is run and managed by the MPA, to ensure the treatment of people held in custody across the capital is satisfactory.

ICV publications

The ICV handbook is produced by the MPA and is a practical guide to independent custody visiting within London.

The Memorandum of Understanding describes the relationship and basic mutual expectations that exist between the MPA and Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs).

ICV newsletters contain news and advice for Independent Custody Visitors.

Every year, each the 31 ICV panels in London are asked to produce an annual report on the work of the panel over that year.

Independent Custody Visiting Association

The Independent Custody Visiting Association (ICVA) is a voluntary organisation that promotes the custody visiting process nationally through advocacy, training, publicity and ongoing support to all involved in the process.

ICV conferences

The MPA hold an ICV conference every two years.  The event is open to all ICVs from the London scheme and to police representatives from the London boroughs'.  Each conference has a theme and guest speakers are invited to give presentations.

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