EXTRA hours will give Thames Valley's deputy police commissioner the opportunity to build on partnerships with other organisations.

Matthew Barber, who formerly led Vale of White Horse District Council for seven years, moved from part-time to full-time yesterday.

The Conservative said that the expanded role was justified by the large workload carried by Police and Crime Commissioner Anthony Stansfeld and his office.

He said: "There is a huge amount that goes on to support the victims of crime, to reduce reoffending, holding the chief constable to account and a lot of partnership working."

Mr Barber said he would be working a lot with partner organisations, including councils and other emergency services.

But he said it was about far more than responding to cuts and adapting to using less

He continued: "A lot of areas are having to work more closely.

"This is not just for necessity - but about how we can improve our services."

The new full-time deputy hit back at critics who raised concerns about Mr Stansfeld, who was elected to his post, installing a fellow Conservative as his deputy.

Mr Barber said: "It is a political role and the deputy is as well. I don't think it should come as a surprise. It's the same across the country and I don't think there's anything wrong with that."