A FORMER police chief who lost his battle with motor neurone disease before Christmas has been awarded a New Year Honour.

Ron Hogg, the late Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner for County Durham and Darlington, was given a CBE.

The honour was made in recognition of his political and charitable services.

Steve White, the current acting Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner, said: “In all my time in policing, I have never known of someone so universally liked and respected as Ron was by officers, staff, politicians and officials.

“The award of a CBE is a fitting tribute to his legacy.”

Mr Hogg, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in July, died on December 17, at the age of 68.

He had been an advocate for the right to die, as well as radical drugs reform, the rights of victims and measures to tackle hate crime.

Mr Hogg had previously worked for Cleveland Police and was first elected as Police and Crime Commissioner in 2012 when the role was created.

He made national headlines for his calls to decriminalise illegal drugs during his work on policy reform alongside former Durham chief constable Mike Barton on the issue.

He stepped down from the role in September after being diagnosed and used his final months to continue to campaign for a change in the law on assisted dying.

Deputy Chief Constable Dave Orford said: “Ron was an outstanding officer and an inspirational leader for Durham Constabulary for more than 40 years so it is fitting that he has been named in Her Majesty’s New Year’s Honours list.

“Throughout his time as an officer and later PCVC, he always put others first and was not only an innovative thinker on crime and policing, but also tackled some of the most difficult issues facing society, including calls for the law to be changed on assisted dying, which he campaigned for until the very end.

“Ron was a great colleague and friend and we hope this honour will bring some comfort to Maureen and his family as testament to his lasting legacy.”

A service to celebrate Mr Hogg’s life will be held at Durham Cathedral, Palace Green, Durham, on January 7, 2020, starting at 11am.