Thames Valley Police announces new chief constable

Francis Habgood, Deputy Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police
Image caption Francis Habgood is the current deputy chief constable and is expected to start his new role in April

The new chief constable of Thames Valley Police has been announced.

Francis Habgood, who is the force's current deputy chief constable, is expected to start in his new role in April.

Sara Thornton is leaving the post to head up the body which is replacing the Association of Chief Police Officers.

Mr Habgood said he was "absolutely delighted" to have been chosen as the preferred candidate by the police and crime commissioner (PCC).

He added: "It will be an honour and privilege to lead the officers, staff and volunteers in the work to keep our communities safe."

PCC Anthony Stansfeld said: "He's been our deputy for around four or five years and has been a hugely effective one.

"Thames Valley has performed as a police force extremely well since he arrived and our performance has been quite excellent and it's in no small part down to the deputy.

"It's going to be a very difficult job with the reductions in our finance."

Image copyright afp/Getty Images
Image caption Sara Thornton will head up the body which is replacing the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo)

Mr Habgood previously served with West Yorkshire Police, having joined in 1987.

He was appointed divisional commander for the North West area of Leeds in January 2001.

He joined Thames Valley Police in 2004 as assistant chief constable (specialist operations) before being promoted to deputy chief constable in 2008.

He is married with two sons.

Mr Habgood's selection is set to be ratified by the police and crime panel later in the month.

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