Labour group ‘steadfastly’ behind PCC Olly Martins, a month after voting against his re-selection

Hitting the right note? Olly Martins (on drums) now has the backing of Luton North
Hitting the right note? Olly Martins (on drums) now has the backing of Luton North

A Labour constituency party has said that it ‘steadfastly’ supports police and crime commissioner Olly Martins, despite voting against his re-selection last month.

At a meeting of Luton North’s Labour group last night, members backed a motion which praised the PCC and said that the constituency is fully behind him.

Mr Martins is fighting to retain his post as the county's police and crime commissioner

Mr Martins is fighting to retain his post as the county's police and crime commissioner

Despite Luton North MP Kelvin Hopkins’ support of Mr Martins, the very same constituency party decided to vote against the re-selection of the PCC during a trigger ballot last month.

The motion read: “Labour North Constituency Party congratulates Olly Martins on his re-selection as the Labour Party candidate in the forthcoming Police and Crime Commissioner Election.

“We recognise the overwhelming mandate he has received from the Labour movement across Bedfordshire and commit outselves to support him steadfastly as together we strive to retain the position of Police and Crime Commissioner for Labour.”

It added: “We extend an invitation to Olly Martins to the next meeting of the Luton North GC to share ideas for campaigning in Luton North to ensure that the Labour vote is as strong as possible on May 5th.”

Last month’s trigger ballot result in Luton North was mirrored in the town’s other constituency, where Gavin Shuker’s backing of Mr Martins was not enough to convice Labour members to vote for the incumbent PCC.

However Mr Martins is said to have gained the ‘overwhelming’ support of other constituency parties across the county, ensuring that his name will be on the ballot in May.

On the Luton North motion, Mr Martins said: “I’m pleased that the Labour Party is united behind me, as vividly evidenced by Kelvin Hopkins’ question in the Commons yesterday.

“They recognise that the biggest issue of this election is the chronic underfunding of Bedfordshire Police and who is best placed to champion the county’s cause to get a fairer funding deal.”