THE Conservatives have made apparent gains from the Lib Dems following a recount in the race to become Durham's new Police Crime and Victims’ Commissioner - which has seen Labour's lead more than half from initial figures.

Returning officer John Hewitt said following a review of the first preference figures that were announced for Spennymoor and Stanley, there were some "discrepancies" brought to his attention. 

"These discrepancies would not have altered the decision to move to second preference vote, however following consultation with all candiates and agents and to ensure full confidence in the outcome, I have asked for a recount of first preference votes in Spennymoor and Stanley."

This does not affect the count in Darlington.

The update result after the first count is Labour on 71,084, Conservatives on 69,748 and Lib Dems on 21,376.

That meant the Liberal Democrat candidate Anne-Marie Curry was knocked out and the count goes to second preferences as no one has a majority of the ballot.

The Northern Echo: Anne-Marie Curry

Ms Curry says she has been pleased with the turnout this year, which looks like being about twice as high as the last PCC election in Durham.

Joy Allen previously represented the Bishop Auckland Town division on Durham County Council but instead of standing for re-electon she stood in the PCVC election this year.

Mrs Allen thinks it's "difficult to say" where second preference ballots could end up and reckons the result is currently on a knife edge.

Durham Police and Crime Commissioner elections: Who can I vote for?

The winner will take over from acting Police and Crime Commissioner for County Durham Steve White, formerly the chief executive of the Durham PCVC, who stepped up after Ron Hogg was diagnosed with motor neurone disease.

Mr Hogg, who was first elected at Durham's Police and Crime Commissioner when the role was created in 2012, died in December 2019, aged 68.