Conservative candidate John Dwyer has won the Cheshire PCC election, regaining the role he held from 2012-2016.
Mr Dwyer served as the county’s first police and crime commissioner, and was assistant chief constable of Cheshire Police prior to his retirement in 2001, after a 30-year career in policing.
Mr Dwyer was also a councillor on Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council from 2003 until 2009 and was the cabinet portfolio holder for safer communities from 2006 until 2009.
The result was declared at the DCBL stadium in Widnes at 8.15pm by Police Area Returning Officer, Halton Borough Council chief executive David Parr.
The Conservative candidate collected 111,962 votes compared to the second place candidate, incumbent David Keane, who achieved 99,463 votes after first and second preferences were declared.
After the first preference count, John Dwyer (Conservative) was in front with 99,565 votes (44.5%), followed by David Keane (Labour) with 83,329 votes (37.3%), Jo Conchie (Lib Dem) with 32,348 votes (14.5%) and Nick Goulding (Reform UK) with 8,258 votes (3.7%).
Turn-out was up across Cheshire at 27% in total compared to 23.85% at the last PCC elections in 2016.
It was highest in Warrington at 35.02%, second highest in Halton at 26.4%, then Cheshire East at 25.32% and lowest in Cheshire West and Chester at 25.03%.
The role of the police and crime commissioner is to hold the chief constable to account on behalf of Cheshire residents, set the police budget and commission services for victims of crime.
Mr Dwyer was the first police and crime commissioner for Cheshire from 2012 to 2016, but lost to David Keane in the 2016 election.
Mr Keane won that vote with 84,601 votes when first and second preferences were combined, while Mr Dwyer polled 81,652 votes.
After the announcement today, Dwyer said: “I am delighted to have been returned as the police and crime commissioner for Cheshire and I want to thank the voters in Cheshire for supporting me.”
He will officially take-up the post on Thursday 13th May 2021.
Chief constable Mark Roberts said: “I’d like to congratulate John Dwyer on his election to the post of police and crime commissioner.
“I know John from when he previously held this role and now look forward to working with him again to ensure we continue to prevent crime, support victims and protect vulnerable people across Cheshire.
“We will work together on a police and crime plan which deals with the issues that most affect our communities and ensures Cheshire is a safe place for the public and a bad place to be a criminal.”
Mr Dwyer told us his priorities for his second term in office include seeing more police officers on our streets.
He said: “An increase in patrolling officers will make them feel safe and deter offenders from committing crime.
“Patrolling officers should improve driver behaviour and make our roads much safer to use, which is also a priority for the public.”
Mr Dwyer, who is president of the local Institute of Advanced Motorists group, said he would also work with road safety organisations to make our roads safer.
He said he wants to extend the mental health triage scheme that he initiated in 2014, to make it available in the force area 24/7.
Speaking back in 2019 when his candidacy was announced, Dwyer stated: “I want to hear from the public on the issues that matter to them.
“I will then ensure that they are reflected in my manifesto and, once in post, will be transferred into the Policing Plan.
“This document will then be the reference document for me to hold the Chief Constable to account on behalf of the public of Cheshire.”