A CAMPAIGN headed by Tatton MP Esther McVey calling for Cheshire officers to be protected in and out of the job through a Police Covenant will become a reality next year.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said the Covenant would focus on protecting officers and staff, health and wellbeing and support for their families and cover serving and retired staff.

The move follows pressure from Blue Collar Conservatism, a group of MPs in Westminster trying to shape Government policy in favour of regular voters, led by Ms McVey, to adopt a Covenant like that protecting the Armed Forces.

Ms McVey said: “I am delighted that within months legislation will be put in place to make this happen.

“It will mean greater protection for officers and staff and their families, and I hope show how much we value the work they do.

“They put themselves in danger daily to protect us and we need to show we are on their side.

“I am delighted officers in Cheshire will be getting the recognition they deserve.

“The idea for the Police Covenant stemmed from conversations I had with officers locally, and that is why I am so passionate about it.”

After initial conversations in Cheshire Ms McVey spoke with police chiefs and organisations up and down the country and secured backing for the move.

She then, along with other BCC members, lobbied the Government to introduce the Covenant.

The Covenant will address major inconsistencies across forces in terms of financial and emotional support for families of officers killed in the line of duty.

It will create a statutory duty to do more to support the police, require Parliament to report annually on the Covenant, cover those in work and retired whether paid or volunteering and focus on wellbeing of officers.

Its main focus will be on physical protection, health and wellbeing and support for families.

Latest figures show there were 596 recorded assaults on Cheshire officers in the 12 months to April.

Across England and Wales there were 30,679 assaults recorded in the latest 12-month period.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “The police and the families that stand behind them deserve special recognition.

“Their bravery and sacrifices are what keep us and our loved ones safe. I will put the police covenant in law to ensure they will always have the support of the nation.”

More than 1,000 responses were submitted as part of Government’s consultation into the Covenant and 90 per cent of respondents favoured introducing it.