Login Register

Column: Pete Sake asks what's in store for Gloucestershire's new police boss

By Stroud Life  |  Posted: November 21, 2012

Comments (0)

WELL, were you one of the pitiful few who voted in the Police and Crime Commissioner election?

A staggeringly poor 17.1% of around 472,000 voters turned out and I don't mind admitting I was one of the 5.8% who voted for independent Martin Surl.

I didn't go through with my veiled threat to spoil my paper in protest at a publicity stunt which I believe won't change much for the public or police.

When I got to the polling station, I went for the next best option – the former policeman.

I think many felt the same way. While not a direct protest vote, I was certainly uncomfortable with the thought of a politician blowing with the wind of the majority on policing policy.

So Martin Surl got my vote and he picked up a stack of second preferences, which put paid to the Tory candidate's chances.

I breathed a quiet sigh of relief – if not ecstasy – at the result but now the hard work starts.

As I said last week, Gloucestershire is losing officers, PCSOs, backroom staff, police stations. Then there's the small matter of two Chief Constables leaving within a year.

First up, Mr Surl has to find a new chief. Whether he is able to choose from officers he's worked above or below during his time with the force before remains to be seen.

Regarded by an ex-copper I ran in to the other day as "a good thief taker" in his time, Mr Surl rose to a high rank. His first priority is to deal with officer morale.

Not surprisingly it's taken a battering in the face of £18million in cuts. That's good news – we need some happier boys and girls in blue on the beat as a baseline.

But has he got what it takes to deal with more cuts if that demand is made by Westminster?

Let's see what cards he's dealt by a Government whose candidates he defeated.

Please note, these are the candid views of our columnist and not those of Stroud Life.

Do you have something to say? Leave your comment here...

max 4000 characters
  • FreeRadical1  |  November 21 2012, 5:19PM

    I find it hard to take the column seriously, as I'm still laughing at the columnist's name. He should take his parents to court and claim compensation. Or maybe it's like a boy named Sue, and his parents thought that it would toughen him up to be called Pete Sake.

    Rate   1
    Report
  • Bonkim2003  |  November 21 2012, 7:45AM

    Mr Surl should resist the temptation to micro-manage based on his previous experience of the force.

    Rate   1
    Report

      YOUR COMMENTS AWAITING MODERATION

       
       

      MORE NEWS HEADLINES

       
       
       

      MOST POPULAR