Monday, 24 February 2014

Our new Chief Constable for Cheshire Police

We had a meeting of Cheshire's Police and Crime Panel today.  It was our confirmation hearing for the proposed appointment of Simon Byrne to be Cheshire's new Chief Constable.

This was our first confirmation hearing for a Chief Constable - part of the reforms which followed the creation of Police and Crime Commissioners.

Simon Byrne is a career policeman.  His most recent positions have been with Greater Manchester Police and most recently with the Metropolitan Police.  He was brought up in Cheshire - and his family is here - so this is something of a home coming for him.

The confirmation hearing was webcast and will be available to view via the CWaC web portal shortly.  From a personal point of view I found his answers to the questions we put were both impressive and insightful.  I had great pleasure, later in the proceedings, in proposing that we recommend to the Commissioner that he appoints Mr Byrne to the position of Chief Constable.  The panel - made up of 5 Conservative Councillors, 5 Labour Councillors and 3 independent members - was unanimous.  We were all impressed.

Later, as part of my day job, I ended up talking to a policeman - outside Cheshire.  I mentioned what I'd been doing earlier in the day.  This policeman knew Simon Byrne and commented that he was a man that knew his own mind and was something of a task master.  Time alone will tell whether that is what he brings to Cheshire.