The role of police and crime commissioner is a discredited experiment and should be abolished. Research conducted before the most recent elections for PCCs, as they’re known, found that fewer than one in ten people knew who their local one was. This despite the fact that they control a policing budget of £12.5 billion and have the final say in appointing chief constables.
So, five years into an experiment that was meant to spearhead a revival of local democracy and police accountability, it is clearly far from a success. The warning signs were there from the beginning: turnout for the first round of voting in 2012 was only 15 per cent — the lowest figure ever recorded for a national election. One polling station in Newport, Gwent, registered no voters at all.