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Hertfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner to step down after 12 years in role

Hertfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd is to step-down at the next election – after 12 years in the role.

Mr Lloyd – who has served three terms – is one of the longest-serving police and crime commissioners in the country. But now he has told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that ‘the art of leadership is knowing when to say goodbye’.

Within days he will write to local Conservative Party officials to tell them he will not be seeking re-selection as candidate for the election in May.

“I always think the art of leadership is knowing when to say goodbye, instead of holding on and holding on,” said Mr Lloyd, who previously served as chair of the local police authority.

“I have had three good terms – probably the longest serving person in police governance.”

Before standing for the newly created role of PCC in 2012, Mr Lloyd had also served as chair of the county’s police authority. He says the move away from police authorities towards higher profile PCCs has made people in Hertfordshire think more about the sort of policing they want to have. He says he believes it has put a greater focus on victims – rather than the perpetrators of crime.

“I think that because of PCCs, I think victims have very much moved to the centre – instead of being on the edge,” he said.

“Most of the criminal justice system is about trying to find our what happened – and then justice. PCCs are more biased towards the victims and putting them at the centre.

“I am really pleased we have the Beacon Victim Service in Hertfordshire – which is one of the leading victim centres in the country.”

Mr Lloyd points to the Beacon service as one of the things he is most proud of – along with a commitment to neighbourhood policing and a record number of police officers.

“There was a move from policing of districts and boroughs – and I very much set my face against that,” he said.

“That’s something I think has worked well. And I think people understand that better.”

During his time in office, Mr Lloyd says he has also seen a fall in crime  – pointing to a 75 per cent drop in violence on the streets and the number of burglaries dropping by half. However he does also acknowledge an increase in reported fraud and in violence against women and girls.

He says that moving forward the biggest challenge for the next PCC will be making sure that policing remains as efficient and effective as possible.

“Local government finance is in a relatively tight place at the moment,” he said.

“And if one part is having difficulties that tends to hit all the other parts of local government.

“They will also still need to make sure we are getting our policing right.”

He particularly points to areas such as the proportionality of stop and search and policing fairly. He also hopes the next PCC will maintain a commitment to the ‘prevention first’ approach – the idea that it is better to prevent crime.

“With all the extra police officers they will want to keep an eye on conviction rates and drive then up further than they are at the moment.”

Having previously served as a district and county councillor, Mr Lloyd says he has been involved in local government for 30 years – and involved in the Conservative Party since the age of 11 – putting leaflets through doors as a schoolboy in th 1974 General Election.

During his time as PCC he has been member of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, serving as board member and chairman, he is also currently a member of the National Criminal Justice Board.

When he steps down as Hertfordshire’s PCC in May, Mr Lloyd plans to take-up a post as a senior research fellow at Birmingham University. He says he plans to look at some of the ‘problems’ he has found over the last few years as PCC – with an interest in local government leadership and criminology.

His future plans include a move away from Hertfordshire – with hopes to pursue interests away from policing that include choral singing and photography.

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