Radio Sandwell Local News

Labour's Bob Jones wins West Midlands' PCC election

2012-11-16 18:10:04

Bob Jones

Labour's Bob Jones has won the election for the West Midlands' first police and crime commissioner (PCC).

Mr Jones led Conservative candidate Matt Bennett by more than 55,000 votes going into the second round of counting in Birmingham and Coventry.

Five other candidates were eliminated after the first round.

Mr Jones is due to take over from the police authority on 22 November and will be responsible for holding the UK's second largest force to account.

On a £100,000 salary, he is expected to set policing priorities and work with the chief constable to allocate the £546m budget.

Under the supplementary system, Mr Jones sealed victory with 117,388 votes, compared with 55,685 for Matt Bennett.

Vote Counting

Ballots for candidates eliminated after the first round were recounted to allocate those voters' second choices.

Across the West Midlands police area, 12% of those eligible to vote turned out, with 7,063 spoilt ballots. The turnout figure was lowest in Coventry at 10.18%.

Deputy police area returning officer Robert Connelly said the figures in the Walsall and Solihull council areas were 12.5%, 12.8% in Birmingham and Wolverhampton and 12.18% in Sandwell.

Liberal Democrat 'collapse'

With a recruitment freeze in place and budget cuts of £125m over the next four years, Mr Jones will take up the post during one of the toughest periods in the force's recent history.

The West Midlands police force area includes Birmingham, Solihull, the Black Country and Coventry.

BBC Political Editor in the Midlands, Patrick Burns, said the result of four district counts showed the "near-collapse" of the Liberal Democrat vote, even in MP Lorely Burt's Solihull ward, where the party's share of the vote dropped from 43% at the last general election to 3.4%.

In Coventry, the Liberal Democrat candidate, Ayoub Khan, polled just 783 votes, even failing to match the number of spoilt ballot papers (884).

BBC WM political reporter Elizabeth Glinka said officials at the Birmingham count said the number of spoilt ballots was "not out of the ordinary" and were in line with what would normally be expected at other elections.

After the first round of counting Bill Etheridge (UKIP), Cath Hannon (Independent), Ayoub Khan (Liberal Democrat), Mike Rumble (Independent) and Bishop Derek Webley (Independent) were eliminated.


Share this story

Related Stories

Local news around the web

'Substance' sprayed at taxi driver at Birmingham station

This is the 'best pasta sauce in the world' - and it has only three simple ingredients

Alleged hammer attack at shopping centre

Thousands expected to bid farewell to Birmingham's 'King of Scoops'

Two men injured in shooting

Man suffers head injuries in horrific machete attack in Wednesbury

Sawn-off shotguns hidden under stairs

Narcos, Birmingham - review

Terrified shoppers flee Merry Hill shopping centre after alleged hammer attack in food court

Hit and run victim was in vintage car

Image Slider