CONSERVATIVE candidate Andrew Snowden won the election to become the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner for the next four years.

He pledged to get more officers for the county and put more bobbies on patrol in rural areas after ousting Labour’s Clive Grunshaw.

The contest went to a second round after none of the candidates secured a majority of votes on first preferences.

Mr Snowden beat Mr Grunshaw, who has held the £86,700-a-year job since it was created in 2012, by less than 10,000 votes.

The result was another blow for Labour after a poor performance in Thursday’s local council elections and failing to regain control of Lancashire County Council.

Mr Snowden said: “I am just overwhelmed to have been supported by 181,000 people across Lancashire.

“That is the most votes a commissioner in the county has ever received. I have talked a lot in the campaign about tackling crime, getting tough on criminals and putting more bobbies for Lancashire and that is what I intend to do.

“We need a more visible police presence on the street and that does not just mean in our towns and cities but in our rural areas to tackle ballooning crime and anti-social behaviours in those rural and remote communities."

“People have also said the commissioner has been invisible but I intend to be out in our communities to ensure that I now the problems and can make them safer.”

The final vote gave Mr Snowden 181,354 votes to Mr Grunshaw’s 172,362 after the other two candidates Liberal Democrat Neil Darby and the Reform UK Party’s Mark James Barker were eliminated.

Their second preference votes were then distributed amongst the remaining two contenders.

On the first preferences Mr Snowden received 166,202 votes - 44.8 per cent of those cast.

Mr Grunshaw secured 154,195 votes - 41.5 per cent.

Liberal Democrat candidate Neil Darby got 32,813 (8.8 per cent) while the Reform UK Party’s Mark James Barker got 17,926 (4.8 per cent).

The turn out across Lancashire in the PCC election was 33.7 per cent.

The results were collated at King George’s Hall in Blackburn,