Tyne & Wear

Police and crime commissioner vote counts start

Counting is under way after voters went to the polls to elect the first police and crime commissioners in the Durham and Northumbria force areas.

Ballot boxes were opened at 11:30 GMT across the Northumbria area while counting started at 12:00 GMT in Durham.

Results are expected by mid-afternoon, depending on turnout.

PCCs will have the responsibility to set police budgets and develop force priorities.

The Northumbria result will be announced at Sunderland Tennis Centre and Durham's winner will be declared at the Louisa Centre in Stanley.

Sunderland Council is traditionally one of the first polling areas to declare for local and national elections.

Voters throughout the Northumbria area had four candidates to choose from.

There were four names on the ballot paper in Durham where the winning candidate will appoint a new chief constable.

Mike Barton is in temporary charge of the force after former chief constable Jon Stoddart's retirement.

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