The five men vying for the top policing post in Norfolk went head-to-head for the first time to lay out their visions for the job at a public meeting last night.

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Answering questions from the public, the county’s potential police and crime commissioners were asked questions ranging from how they would protect the service from cuts, to providing specific examples of how they had personally exposed wrongdoing in their lives.

Conservative James Athill, Liberal Democrat James Joyce, Labour’s Steve Morphew and independents Mervyn Lambert and Stephen Bett attended the Ecumenical Criminal Justice Forum in Norwich, which was attended by around 40 invited guests and members of the public.

Other issues included the use of restorative justice, how to reduce youth offending, the importance of partnership working and effective links with the monitoring police and crime panel.

Each candidate laid out his priorities ahead of the November 15 elections, pledging to protect the frontline and strengthen links with other agencies.

The hour-long session was the first time the public has been able to see the five together, though they did not directly challenge each other on specific policy.

The PCC candidates will face a Question Time session chaired by Henry Cator, the High Sheriff of Norfolk at Voluntary Norfolk in Norwich at 5pm on October 29, and the West Norfolk Professional Development Centre in King’s Lynn at 5pm on November 1. Call 01603 883809 to book a place.

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