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Election count update: Stephen Bett elected as Norfolk’s first police and crime commissioner (PCC)

19:07 16 November 2012

The counting of the votes in the Norfolk Police Crime Commissioner election begins at St Andrews Hall. Picture: Denise Bradley

The counting of the votes in the Norfolk Police Crime Commissioner election begins at St Andrews Hall. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

Former police authority chairman Stephen Bett has been declared Norfolk’s first police and crime commissioner (PCC).

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In profile: Stephen Bett

The former chairman of Norfolk Police Authority emotionally quit in September so he could embark on a campaign as an independent candidate in the race to become the county’s first police and crime commissioner this month.

Stephen Bett, who had been chairman for six years, also resigned from the Norfolk County Council Conservative Group (NCCCG) and the North West Norfolk Conservative Association (NWNCA).

Mr Bett’s decision to stand as an independent came after he missed out on being selected as the Conservative candidate for Norfolk in July.

In his election statement, Mr Bett pledged to keep Norfolk safe, keep party politics out of policing, secure the financial future and be firmly focused on what our community needs.

He said: “Putting the safety of individuals and communities first, I will:

Keep Norfolk safe as one of the lowest crime counties in the country;

Ensure that police fight serious and organised crime and support vulnerable people, including our elderly and disabled. Priority crimes include drug dealing, sexual offences, domestic violence, hate crime and anti-social behaviour;

Protect the frontline in the face of cuts;

Secure the constabulary’s financial future;

Protect local policing from privatisation – achieving the savings we need by collaborating with other police and public services, and with the voluntary sector;

Ensure the Constabulary works smarter – using targeting and prevention to reduce demand, working with young people to stay clear of crime; and using restorative justice to achieve long-lasting solutions.

Making balanced decisions in the best interests of the community, I will:

Listen to communities and victims;

Reach out to minority communities and the disengaged to ensure policing is fair and equitable;

Be a strong, independent voice, robustly challenging the chief constable to deliver what the public needs;

Reject party politics and work with other Independents to provide a national voice.”

He added: “Why Me? I am the candidate with the most experience of policing. I have been on the police authority for 16 years, the last six as chairman.

“Under my chairmanship Norfolk has become one of safest counties in England. We have delivered large savings while increasing efficiency and satisfaction.”

Mr Bett, who resigned as chairman and from the Conservative party to embark on a campaign as an independent candidate, beat Tory candidate Jamie Athill into second place.

Mr Bett received a total of 39,988 votes compared to Mr Athill, who was selected as Conservative candidate ahead of Mr Bett in the summer. Mr Athill received a total of 36,605.

The results were announced at St Andrews Hall, in Norwich, just after 6.15pm.

Mr Bett said: “Thank you Norfolk! I’m delighted to have won the election to be Norfolk’s first police and crime commissioner and pleased that my non-party political stance won the day with the voters.”

Stephen Bett, at the launch of his PCC manifesto in Norwich. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAYStephen Bett, at the launch of his PCC manifesto in Norwich. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

He also thanked his family and campaign team, who dubbed his bid The Safe Bett, for their “fantastic” support.

Mr Athill said: “This is my first election and of course I’m disappointed to have lost but the first thing Iu must to is congratulate Mr Bett and his team.” He added he was a supporter of the post of police and crime commissioner and said Mr Bett would have his “support”.

The race to become Norfolk’s first PCC became a two-horse race after the first round of voting. Mr Athill and Mr Bett were out in front after the Norfolk first round results were announced just before 4pm.

But as no man had secured more than 50pc of the vote, voters’ second preferences were counted.

Mr Athill, who received 30,834 (31.7 pc) votes, and Mr Bett, who got 27, 842 (28.6pc) then went head-to-head in a second round of counting after the three other candidates were eliminated.

Former Norwich City Council leader Steve Morphew, Labour’s candidate, received 21,456 votes (22pc), Ukip’s Matthew Smith 9,633 (9.9pc) and Lib Dem candidate James Joyce got 7,392 (7.6 pc).

The total valid first preference votes for Norfolk was 97,157 while the total rejected was 3,251, which means a total of 100,408 people voted in Norfolk.

Overall turnout was 15pc of eligible voters, which breaks down as Breckland 12.9pc, Broadland 15pc, Great Yarmouth 12.6pc, King’s Lynn 14.5pc, North Norfolk 16.1pc, Norwich 16.3pc and South Norfolk 17pc.

In Suffolk Conservative Tim Passmore has become Suffolk’s first police and crime commissioner.

Labour’s Jane Basham had held a narrow lead in the race after round one, but after the second choices of those who voted for David Cocks, an independent, and Bill Mountford, Ukip, were counted, Mr Passmore won.

The turnout figure in Suffolk has been confirmed as 16.01pc, meaning 88,497 of the county’s 552,780 voters bothered to take part in the election.

For full story see tomorrow’s paper.

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45 comments

  • Far from a ringing endorsement for local MPs. Norwich saw Labour take the lead on first preference and Lib Dems slunk to fourth in North Norfolk.

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    Jono

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Total rejected is 3251, which is probably spoilt papers. Around 3.3% of the vote cast. EDP please ask the questionmake a comparison on previous elections (councilgeneral) to see if there is an increase.

    Report this comment

    ryburgh

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Lucky for the tories abandoning their principles re first past the post, otherwise their bod would have lost in Suffolk in the first round. Anyone querying turnout and lack of demand, a logical approach would have been local referenda to determine voter wishes, same as happens with elected mayors. So what is the tory agenda railroading through this change? Sneak enough of their people in under a cloud of voter apathy and inappropriate timing no doubt, and thereafter financial and similar crimes will become deprioritised in the next 2 years before the general election. So no scandals for DC to defend. Such things are dangerous and can create momentum, as he knows only too well with the Saville affair. They need to be snuffed out as early as possible, or better still supressed in the first place.

    Report this comment

    Police Commissioner ???

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Oh for a true independent since they would have won

    Report this comment

    No to tory boy

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Any empty ballot boxes as in Gwent and Gloucestershire?

    Report this comment

    Peter Watson

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • sorry Frank, but at the top of this page, on my pc, it says Great Yarmouth Mercury. having said that, i do NOT know anyone who voted simply because there was no information on any of the candidates that i know of, not even a leaflet through the door. How do you vote for someone you have never seen nor know any background of. Any way who in hell wants a politically run police force? Any changes that are made will not be for the better.

    Report this comment

    Edmund Earle

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Rather alarming that Stuart White on the Beeb announced a "clean sweep" for the Tories in the Eastern Region. So now we know what they think of Bett! Still, if Bett has taken on board the total humilition the local oiks (sorry Tories activists) put him through at the selection process where a bunch of yahoos sat in front of me and slapped their flippers together in total joy when their bestest chum in whole world Colonel Athill (so long mate, dont come back from the Czech Republic in a hurry) came on to give a "I'm just a regular guy" speech and then booed when Bett came on. If he crawls back to them then he deserves everything he gets. Stay with the Independents then you are your own man. Do you really want to be associated with Athill lovers and Murphy types? Yuck.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Amusingly this report is listed under "Other Crime Stories" on your front page and that seems appropriate. As the public has amply demonstrated they are not interested ion this American idea, foiusted off on this country by a life-time American who only came back to the UK to collect his peerage and a job as Big Dave's police adviser. Given the outstanding failure of his idea maybe he would like to return to New York ASAP. The worst aspect of this is that it undermines the police as well as the procedure and that makes it unforgivable.

    Report this comment

    Richard Woods

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • This is a Suffolk newspaper reporting for Suffolk people. Why are we bombarded by "Norfolk" election news? Surely the readers want to know about Suffolk's candidates & result. That is if you think having elected people for these posts is a good idea in the first place. I don't, & it seems most of the population agree, judging by the dire turn out. A few months ago the Tories were all over the unions for low turn out at strike ballots, but they still hold the ballot as valid in these PCC elections! Many Tory MP's are elected on similar turn outs to the union ones.

    Report this comment

    Frank

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • So conservative party. the people of Norfolk dont like being told to vote for your choice. Betts may be an ex Tory but so will most of the Independents standing next May. And people are fed up with you telling them how to vote.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • If Conservative MPs are urging the Government to change the rules so that unions cannot call industrial action on the basis of a low ballot turnout, then the same should apply to these ballots in that unless there is a 40% turnout they should be declared null and void, then you wouldn't get all these plonkers running everything.

    Report this comment

    Bloater

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • "The total valid first preference votes for Norfolk was 97, 157 while the rotal rejected was 3, 251 which means a total of 100, 408 people turned out at polling stations across Norfolk to vote (15pc)." Sorry to be pedantic EDP - but this is not the number of people who turned out at polling stations - as there are a good number of postal votes.

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    suffin else

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • U.K.I.P.is the ony way ! we have all had the wake up call so many times ±

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    Albert Cooper

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Oh well, back to selling arms to dodgy dictatorships and mad mullahs then Mr Athill.... and as for Bett, scratch the surface of this 'independent' and the colour blue will shine through. The only 'Safe Bett' is that Derrick Murphy will be on the phone within 24 hours.

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    User Removed

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Hardly a race is it? These elections are a farce and should be declared null and void.

    Report this comment

    IT Man

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Interesting to see Lamb's Lib Dems go from 1st to 4th in 2 years in North Norfolk. Labour in North norfolk polled nearly the same amount as they did in 2010, not bad considering in 2010 it was a 73.2% turnout compared to 16.1% this time. I think Labour have reason to be cheerful in North Norfolk. Not so for the Lib Dems Hero to Zero for them

    Report this comment

    Callum Ringer

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Does anyone actually give a monkey's who was elected by this farce of an election for a non post anyway?

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    robotsthatcare

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • So Norfolk votes for the bloke who opposed the creation of this post before seeking the Tory nomination for it before abandoning his political convictions to enable him to stand as an 'independent'. What's that old saying...? You can always tell a Norfolk man, but you can't tell him much.

    Report this comment

    a fine city

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Complete waste of time. The dismal results shows that they have even less of a mandate than the MPs and the Council, who all also have zero right to rule. I wouldn't be surprised if they made half the votes up (and if they did be sure that you wouldn't hear about it from Archant). It's shocking even this number people turned up. I would love to see an age breakdown of those who vote. No doubt 70%> of them are over 50. The Police are a bunch a violent thugs and this silly little election is not going to change that fact. While they continue to enforce the Misuse of Drugs Act there is always going to be large sections of our communities that are marginalized, for this reason and while this discrimination continues I, and many others, will never be a part of this society, no matter how many elections they hold.

    Report this comment

    fcuk_the_law

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

  • Another waste of public money! Funny how a bankrupt country can always find money for nonense like this! A worthwhile ballot would be whether or not we stay in the EU,but politicians will never allow that!

    Report this comment

    Harry Rabinowitz

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Pitiful turnout. I can't see how these elections are valid. I received no electoral communication at all except for a ballot card.

    Report this comment

    Disgusted of Norwich South

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • whoever gets in will only have taken 5% of the possible votes from the people of Norfolk, hardly democracy is it? FARCE more like.

    Report this comment

    Mobile Tone

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • I think this is a case where the people were told 'you have to have this', and we didn't want it, so we didn't vote. Not that anyone wants to listen to the people.

    Report this comment

    kenneth jessett

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • you can get anywhere with money

    Report this comment

    nhs lover

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Neither my partner were allowed to vote and nor were any of the people I work with. How can this result stand when people were denied their right to vote....

    Report this comment

    viperman17

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

  • It was the EDP that won it for Bett! Normal service will now resume between the police, Bett and the EDP. The chance of the police actually being put back onto our streets, has now gone forever.

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    BG

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Why viperman17 are you an illegal?

    Report this comment

    Bloater

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

  • And how many spoilt papers?

    Report this comment

    User Removed

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • The EDP supported Mr. Athill, not Mr. bett and I'm looking forward to the by election in Thornham, as PCC, Mr. Bett, who will have to resign his council seat now. The election was rigged using every trick in the book, information was withheld and delayed, smear was added like salt to a dish and it will be dealt with.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Who ever wins, I wonder if they'll be wasting resources prosecuting people who are in possession of a couple of quids worth of weed.

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    Martin

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Betts got it then.....same old SH*T, different package, how long before he rejoins the Conservative fold I wonder?

    Report this comment

    Farquarson-Smythe

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Whatever happened to first past the post? I thought the tories were all for it. Tory sneaks in throgh the back door (back passage?) in Suffolk and now just seen Prezza losing out the same way. If Athill gets in, will that mean Norfolk police will be armed ;)

    Report this comment

    Police Commissioner ???

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • It is hardly surprising that this farce had a disappointing turn out. A police commissioner was never a public demand. More effective police on the street is the public wish. The large salary of the new position and his or her entourage will run into millions per annum. At at time of so called " austerity " when the police budget is drastically cut. The idea of a police commisioner was promoted to get the general public to apply for the position. A man woman on the street approach. Unfortunately most people could not afford the £5000 . deposit , non refundable to the losers. The end result is that all the main parties put forward a candidate. Resulting in a political appointment. The need for apolice commissioner was never fully explained. The public interests now have to rely on a party politican. Perhaps this was the real reason for the whole charade. Acquiring control of the police at local level could be the first step towards privatisation or worse. It is doubtful if the general public will have any say in future policing.

    Report this comment

    norman hall

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • So, we have the two dimensional Stephen Bett as our PCC, the man who wetted himself when he was denied the Conservative nomination. His mandate is totally slim. And what is he going to do about his landed estates, and his agricultural interests? Is that why he appointed a deputy in advance, with no open recruitment exercise? Bear in mind that in 2010-2011 his attendance record as a member of NCC was abysmal. Despite the huge cost of this election, nothing has changed. He will keep the existing support structure in place, and the Police and Crime Panel will just be the equivalent of the old Norfolk Police Authority under another name. The only difference is that, instead of a reward of about £30k, he will pick up total remuneration of around £88k. And despite his superficial rejection of the Conservative Party, once denied its nomination, he will still toe the Conservative Party line. What a total mess.

    Report this comment

    Nemesis

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • EDP article – “Firearms death at Titchwell hotel is referred to police watchdog - A police spokesman today confirmed a firearm was involved and said the matter had been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission “due to previous police contact.” Interestingly this isn’t much further than a stone’s throw from Bett’s own front door. Nemesis is quite correct, he should also honour what he said in public that he would be doing this job full time and resign from being a CC, and when he tries to sneak back to the Con Party he should be made to relinquish this position.

    Report this comment

    Honest John

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • I wonder how many people mistakenly thought it was mandatory for them to select a second candidate on their voting papers? It certainly wasn`t made clear on my Yarmouth postal voting papers that you did not have to select a second candidate. Another issue for the Electoral body to examine. Too late to do anything about it now.

    Report this comment

    BG

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Interesting to see Lamb's Lib Dems go from 1st to 4th in 2 years in North Norfolk. Labour in North norfolk polled nearly the same amount as they did in 2010, not bad considering in 2010 it was a 73.2% turnout compared to 16.1% this time. I think Labour have reason to be cheerful in North Norfolk. Not so for the Lib Dems Hero to Zero for them

    Report this comment

    Callum Ringer

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • True Blue Tory Boy Bett wins on a Non-political vote, what a Joke. Bett has not stopped Norfolk cuts in the past, what makes him think that he can stop it in the future, when his Mates at Con HQ impose the next round of cuts and privatisation of our police force. Representing the people ha ha ha

    Report this comment

    Farquarson-Smythe

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • This will be a lesson for the Tories next Mays County elections. The whole county has been watching the fiasco over the incinerator at Kings Lynn. The results of the planning inspector’s decision will not be published until July next year which will cause further anxiety to the residents of west Norfolk and also if it gets built will mean another three waste incinerators will be built throughout Norfolk. The Tory led administration in Norfolk has come down far too heavy handed and do not listen. Roll on May elections.

    Report this comment

    batemansusan

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Tory or Tory, welcome to Norfolk. G4S will be waiting for the call.

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    Pobol Pobotrol

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Stephen Bett does not have a legitimate mandate to take charge of the police service. His total vote is only about 7.5% of the electorate. That means 92.5% of us did not vote for him. Where is the legitimacy in that? The vote should be declared void. The vast majority of the public don't want these PCCs, and expressed that clearly yesterday by not taking part in the elections.

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    Derek Colman

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Looks like the EDP (and Look East) get their way following their smeer stories against the candidates without tory associations.

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    Police Commissioner ???

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Quote from Mr Bett "Ensure the Constabulary works smarter" Does this include Mr Bett, getting rid of the damn awful para military uniform and smartening our officers up so they don`t look like they have just got out of bed and have come to work without having a shave ?

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    BG

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • No, even a police officers will have to ask themselves whether this man represents their needs to serve Norfolk. there is no mandate and I agree that the same rigorous rules applied to unions, should apply to our public servants. Has Mr. Bett been asked whether he is a Freemason? anybody knows?

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Friday, November 16, 2012

  • Even the local Tory Norfolk councillors wrote to say they didn't agree with having PCC's, but the local Tory MPs didn't take any notice and voted to introduce them. Norfolk needs to stop voting for Tories.

    Report this comment

    I LoveNorfolk

    Friday, November 16, 2012

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