A FORMER borough councillor has been named as Cheshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner in an election which saw a turnout of just 14 per cent.

The Conservatives John Dwyer was named commissioner at the count held in Chester on Friday, November 16.

Mr Dwyer, a former Assistant Chief Constable and former Crewe and Nantwich Borough councillor, won after polling 48,591 votes in the election held on Thursday.

Labour candidate John Stockton came second with 37,350.

The election went to the second preference vote stage as no one had overall majority after the first count.

Third was Pickmere-based Independent candidate Sarah Flannery, who posted 18,596. Fourth was Liberal Democrat Ainsley Arnold with 10,653, and UKIP candidate Louis Bours was fifth with 8,557.

Mr Dwyer promised to crackdown on anti-social yobs and double the number of Special Constables in his manifesto.

He said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been elected by the people of Cheshire but the hard work starts here to deliver my manifesto pledges.

“This is an exciting and challenging new role which I see as bringing a new dynamic to policing with myself as a single focus point of accountability. I will ultimately be held to account by the public, not just those who voted for me, but all of those who are served by the constabulary.”

Mr Dwyer will take up his post tomorrow (Thursday, November 22) and added: “My election campaign was based on a series of commitments to the people of Cheshire and my work will be centred on delivering those pledges.

“Cheshire is already a fantastic area and a safe place to live. But we must not rest on our laurels. Success lies in freeing police officers to do what they do best- policing.”

Chief Constable David Whatton said: “I am looking forward to working with John in the new role of Police and Crime Commissioner.

“I am confident that he wants to make Cheshire safe and to make people feel safe by dealing robustly with crime and anti-social behaviour. The wider role of the Police and Crime Commissioner will bring all organisations and communities together to make a positive difference to people′s lives.”
MR Dwyers’s election campaign priorities were:

• Enhancing frontline policing to enable officers to further drive down crime still further.

• Increasing the Special Constabulary to 1000, with a Special in every town and village.

• Demanding a zero tolerance approach towards yobbish behaviour to punish the small minority who blight our lives.

• Introducing a sentencing unit that will monitor punishments on behalf of victims of crime and, where necessary, campaign for tougher sanctions.

• Making rural crime a particular focus for police activity.

• Building fresh partnerships with a strong focus on drugs and alcohol abuse.

• Introducing the post of Youth Ambassador.

• Building and enhancing the most important partnership of all − the one between public and the police.