Birmingham & Black Country

PCC Bob Jones service memorial attended by 800 people

Bob Jones Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Bob Jones was awarded a CBE for services to policing in 2010

A memorial service to celebrate the life of former West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Bob Jones has taken place in Wolverhampton.

The service at the Civic Hall was attended by more than 800 people including members of his family, local MPs and police officers.

Mr Jones, 59, from Wolverhampton, who was elected to the role in November 2012, died at home on 1 July.

A private funeral at Bushbury Crematorium was held after the service.

A police guard of honour saluted Mr Jones's coffin as it arrived at the Civic Hall.

West Midlands Police said flags were flying at half mast on all its buildings.

Image caption Tributes were paid to Bob Jones by family members and former work colleagues

Chief Constable Chris Sims said: "[Bob] will be a tough act to follow.

"I shall miss the man I have worked with for more than 15 years. He was dogged, quirky, loyal and dedicated."

The service lasted for an hour-and-a-half and included tributes from the shadow minister for policing, Jack Dromey, and senior Wolverhampton councillor, John Reynolds, who was Mr Jones's cousin.

He said: "The memory I hope many people will have of him was as a very straightforward, honest man that always did his best to help people.

"I think if we could all be a bit more like Bob, I think the world would be a better place."

People attending the service wore an item of red clothing to symbolise Mr Jones's connections with the Labour party.

The congregation also included local members of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), of which he was a member.

Image caption More than 800 people attended the service at Wolverhampton Civic Hall

Paul Flint, 42, from Wolverhampton, said he had known Mr Jones for 10 years, after meeting him at a beer festival.

"He was a very likable, very popular man and he will be missed by a lot of people around Wolverhampton," he said.

Mr Jones served as a Labour councillor in Wolverhampton for 33 years and was also a member of the West Midlands Police Authority.

In 2010 he was awarded a CBE for services to policing.

He courted controversy when he called for PCCs to be scrapped, but also lent his support to several campaigns while occupying the role.

An election to fill the vacancy left by Mr Jones's death will be held in August.

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