Following the Government’s decision to dissolve Police Authorities and replace them with a Police and Crime Commissioner for each of the 41 constabularies in England and Wales, Stephen was elected on 15 November 2012 as your first Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Norfolk. Stephen stood as the Independent candidate alongside candidates from the leading political parties. He received a total of 39,988 votes, which included second preference votes and was 3,300 votes more than his closest opponent.
A key element of Stephen’s election campaign was his ten point pledge which he has progressed since taking office.
Stephen had been involved in local government for over 35 years prior to taking office as your PCC on 22 November 2012. Stephen signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office (see related documents below) at a ceremony held in the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk in Wymondham.
Stephen’s first taste of local politics was in 1977 as a Parish Councillor on his local village council at Thornham in West Norfolk, on which he remained a member for 30 years. Stephen was born and raised in a farming family in the area where he still farms. His family connections to Thornham date back to the Domesday Book. In 1987 he was elected as a Conservative member of Norfolk County Council and was selected to represent the council on the Norfolk Police Authority in 1996. He was Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Police Authority, during which time he was actively involved in the success of Norfolk Constabulary in overhauling the custody facilities and making major cost saving measures due to budget constraints linked to a successful programme of collaboration.
Stephen stood down from both the Police Authority and the Conservative party in September 2012 to enable him to stand as a candidate for the PCC election and resigned from the County Council following his election.
Stephen was supported in his campaign by Jenny McKibben, an independent member of the Police Authority with experience in partnership working and performance management, who he chose as his Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner.
Stephen is married to Philippa and they have three children, two daughters and a son and several dogs. Stephen is a keen sportsman enjoying country pursuits as well as many sports, e.g. golf, tennis, rugby and hockey.