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Martin Surl wins Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner election

By EchoLauraC  |  Posted: November 16, 2012

  • Candidates Martin Surl Rupi Dhanda Victoria Atkins and Alistair Cameron

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Independent candidate Martin Surl has been voted Gloucestershire's first ever Police and Crime Commissioner.

The former police officer beat nearest rival, Tory Victoria Atkins by 4247 votes following a count of voters' second preferences.

Mrs Atkins won the first vote with 28,422 with independent candidate Martin Surl coming second with 27,676 votes.

Neither gained 50% of the vote which meant voters second preference were counted.

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Retired Mr Surl, 55, from Birdlip, who first joined Gloucestershire Police 30 years ago, said he does not see the need for employing a deputy PCC at the moment. He will take up the post full-time on Thursday.

He said his main priorities would be morale within the police.

“It is a tremendous honour and six months ago I would not have dreamed of being here – it has been a wonderful journey.”

“This is going to be a marathon, not a sprint, and there are things that need resolving within the force and clearly morale is one of these issues that needs looking at very quickly,” he said.

“We have got to keep crime low and the budget is awful.” – I’ve examined it thoroughly and it is not great.”

Victoria Atkins won more votes on the first round but did not get 50 per cent of those cast, so second preferences were counted. Following her defeat, she wished him luck.

“Everyone has done a fantastic job. I want to thank the police for giving all of us their help in preparing for the election and we are lucky to have a great force in Gloucestershire.

“I am extremely proud that more than 28,000 people chose me as their first choice,” she said.

Here are the figures from the second round vote:

Victoria Atkins: Stroud - 533, Tewkesbury - 669, Forest of Dean - 326, Cheltenham - 980, Gloucester - 943, Cotswolds - 466.

Total: 3917

Martin Surl: Stroud - 1963, Tewkesbury - 1040, Forest of Dean - 1185, Cheltenham - 1583, Gloucester - 2126, Cotswolds - 1013.

Total: 8910

Spoilt: Stroud - 800, Tewkesbury - 358, Forest of Dean - 447, Cheltenham - 520, Gloucester - 785, Cotswolds - 246.

Total: 3157

Here are the figures from the first round vote:

Victoria Atkins: Stroud - 5560, Tewkesbury - 3997, Forest of Dean - 3133, Cheltenham - 4870, Gloucester - 4232, Cotswolds - 6630.

Total: 28,422

Alistair Cameron: Stroud - 1100, Tewkesbury - 1608, Forest of Dean - 677, Cheltenham - 2942, Gloucester - 1163, Cotswolds - 1173.

Total: 8663

Rupi Dhanda: Stroud - 3357, Tewkesbury - 1227, Forest of Dean - 1963, Cheltenham - 1601, Gloucester - 4403, Cotswolds - 1190.

Total: 13741

Martin Surl: Stroud - 5904, Tewkesbury - 3744, Forest of Dean - 3725, Cheltenham - 5800, Gloucester - 4415, Cotswolds - 4088.

Total: 27,676

Spoilt: Stroud - 482, Tewkesbury - 277, Forest of Dean - 254, Cheltenham - 420, Gloucester - 285, Cotswolds - 397.

Total: 2115

Overall turn out set to be the worst in England’s peacetime history.

Forest of Dean 14.8 per cent (9,752 out of 66,016)

Stroud 18 per cent (16,403 out of 90,955)

Tewkesbury 16.4 per cent (10,853 out of 66,042)

Cheltenham 17.6% (15,633 out of 88,773)

Cotswold 19.8 per cent (13,478 out of 68,136)

Gloucester 15.7% (14,499 out of 92,454)

Overall 17.1% (80,618 out of 472,376)

Gloucestershire Constabulary’s Chief Constable Mick Matthews said: “I would like to offer my congratulations to Martin Surl on his appointment to the new role of Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire.

“Today marks the start of what I am sure will be a strong working relationship between the Constabulary and the Commissioner to deliver our purpose of keeping people safe from harm and inspiring the highest levels of confidence in us, their local police.

“The Constabulary is committed to working positively with the PCC in the future to ensure the focus remains upon delivering a police force that best serves our communities in Gloucestershire.”

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  • 8589brian  |  December 21 2012, 3:08PM

    Does this mean Martin Surl is in gainful employment or is it one of those jobs a person gets a wage by not really doing a great deal...and by wage I mean a huge sum of cold hard cash that would easily pay for half a dozen extra police officers on a annual basis.

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  • justjude  |  November 18 2012, 11:54PM

    Strange comments, unfortunately people don't seem to realise that politicians are people WE elect to run the country, they are not an alien species. If you don't like politicians then get off your lazy backside, join a party, stand for election and stop whingeing about those that do. But no most people who are anti politicians are just that Moaning whingeing morons who want other people to do everything for them. As for martin Surl, I don't think that PCC are a good idea, the elections should be coterminous with council elections to boost turnout. But if someone is overseeing the police it should be a truly independent person who is not an ex-police officer. Police oversight of the police in every area has proved to be a disaster and i am sure martin will be another example of when the police oversee the police a blind eye is turned . Because people distrust elected politicians in Martin Surl we have made a BIG BIg mistake

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  • tomtom100  |  November 18 2012, 7:01PM

    Not the best start to the job , can only hope he takes notice of the public .later on,

  • Ysedra  |  November 18 2012, 3:14PM

    Alex, I think you might be *just* missing the target but hitting the tree with the local democracy deficit, at least re parish councils. It seems to me to be more of the case that public apathy leaves the requisite number of parish council seats filled without the need for a contest (I recall controversy when a council chairman tried to dissuade one applicant too many, or ask an existing member to stand down instead, because it would save the cost of an election). Some residents in Quedgeley have even called for the abolition of their parish council because they feel it only replicates what the city/county council does everywhere else. In practise, that 'council' is filled with Labour and Lib-Dem supporting members, because the Tories win the 'proper' seats. So maybe the right approach is to ascertain if anybody in those areas really feel that they have been disadvantaged by the way things are being run? An even better tack might be to side with the calls for a unitary body of management? Deal with the whole edifice in one fell swoop?

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  • GlosYap2  |  November 18 2012, 9:47AM

    Capital, made me chuckle that Mr Cameron on TV was plugging the positions as democratic so therefore setting some kind of standard above what was before! Being directly elected means what when its by such a miniscule percentage of the voting public (especially when as in this case the votes are based on nothing more than the most inconsequential of reasons). Such a position being pushed by a government that was not itself "directly elected" makes the whole thing MORE farcical! How can any politician be accountable to the public when they all play the same game? UK democracy = 5 year dictatorship. When theyre in, they''re in and theres no way to get rid of them til they do something to annoy someone more powerful. At which point the system pretends theyve done something seriously awful and the theatre of politics puts on a show to show how wonderful and "accountable" they all are... For all those who voted for Surl in the hope they wouldnt get a politician.... Without playing their "game" he wouldnt have got as far as he did. So regardless of how he started out, he will become what you didnt want. Alex Steel, well for you this will be an opportunity. As a politician his finances should be more transparent and his political relationships, ideology and dealings with commercial interests will become apparent over time...

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  • alexsteel  |  November 18 2012, 4:30AM

    Systemic Political Corruption In Plain View Ignored By Marin Surl:- I sent a short email to Martin Surl a week ago (12th/13th) together with a five hundred word attachment detailing from public sources how both the Cotswold District's and Gloucestershire's senior party politicians systemically cartel: 'market share' and or 'bid rig' or else 'unitarily abolish' the local entry level elections thereby rigging all of their own elections above too! I asked Martin Surl to pass my complaint to the Chief Constable; C.C., as when I tried complaining about it from May to Sept 2011 via the Cotswold Returning Officer and directly all I got was a Glos CID investigation of me on a politically initiated counter-complaint and I've still never even received a police crime complaint receipt for my evidenced, cartel complaint. No reply from Mr Surl so far! So if you'd like the 500wds I sent to him to pass concerning the UK Snr party politicians systemic cartel fraud of the local 'entry level' elections in the Cotswolds, Glos and beyond, thereby general elections too, send to me: james.steel1@virgin.net. Sandy Aex Steel"

  • spindles12  |  November 17 2012, 9:56PM

    The reported "wage"has been £65,000 but it depends on which area and force the PCC is with. According to the Home Office information on Commissioners "The salary range has been adjusted to represent differences in force weighting and policing challenges and has been aligned but is not equal to chief constable salaries. The policing challenges a PCC faces will be different depending on the specific needs and demands of the force area" Gloucestershire is one of only five out of 41 who get the £65,000. It goes up in increments until it reaches £100,000, the highest being for Greater Manchester, West Midlands and West Yorkshire. I bet they were clammering to get elected in those three places!

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  • GlosAnarchy  |  November 17 2012, 9:33PM

    "If the turnout is only 15% then they should only get 15% of the wage, I wonder how long they will work for £9750 per year before they walk away and fade into no more than a distant memory!"

  • FreeRadical1  |  November 17 2012, 2:53PM

    Some people think that having an elected PCC is more democratic, but we already elect our councillors and MPs, and most of us are sicka nd tired of them. Some people think that having a PCC will somehow save money, but it has been admitted that the whole farce has cost an EXTRA £100 million for England and Wales. How long will that take to recoup, even if it is true that the PCC costs less? Also, a new police commissioner will have to be elected from time to tiem (presumably every four years?) and that all costs money. Finally, did anyone REALLY vote for Martin because he has a Dalmatian dog? I'm hoping that that was a joke, but I wouldn't put it past some people to make a judgement in that way. By the way, Richard Graham has an absolutely lovely doggie named Twiglet...

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  • Ysedra  |  November 17 2012, 1:51PM

    Sorry, that should have been 'ideologically', I guess. I often get that one wrong...

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