An ex-police chief and army officer who has vowed to take a "zero tolerance" approach to crime starts work today as Surrey's first Police and Crime Commissioner.

Independent candidate Kevin Hurley won last Thursday’s election, after getting 52,793 votes out of an electorate of 856,968 - just six per cent of the vote. Overall turnout for the county was a meagre 15.7 per cent.

Conservative candidate Julie Iles, who was ahead of Mr Hurley in the first count of votes, lost out to him by 8,000 votes when second preferences were added.

The 59-year-old has served in the police, including in the Surrey Police force, for 30 years in various roles ranging from police constable to borough commander and has worked as a detective and an undercover officer.

He said he felt "humbled" to have won and was determined to deliver a hard-line focus on anti-social behaviour to reduce crime.

He said: "The people want someone who will take a firm line on anti-social behaviour, on louts and bullies, on burglars, and those who deal class A drugs to our children and certain legislation which is under-used to give victims back the profits of crime - putting victims at the centre of the criminal justice system.

"Zero tolerance is a state of mind. It means not ignoring things and walking by.

"If police officers are driving through the high street and see a rowdy group of people making shoppers uncomfortable they should stop the car and speak to these people.

"If they don’t moderate their behaviour they will get a fixed penalty notice and if they don’t accept that they should be arrested."

He added: "I want to work with the police chiefs to maintain the ethos and services of police officers, back them against unreasonable criticism and make sure their voice is heard.

"I will be uncompromising in the stardards we can expect from the police."

Mr Hurley, who has completed two tours of Iraq as a police officer and a soldier during his 42 years as a reservist army officer in the Parachute regiment and the RMP, said his extensive policing experience is what the electorate wanted in a candidate.

He initially stood for nomination as a Conservative candidate, despite never having been a member of a party, and said he wasn't selected because the party felt he was not "political enough".

He said: "I’ve hit the ground absolutely running. I understand the issue of risk and no one is going to pull the wool over my eyes.

"Surveys done before the election show the electorate think my police experience is a great advantage.

"If you want to win political office in Surrey you have to run as a Conservative.

"I offered myself up to the party and in the end they said I wasn’t political enough.

"I then ran my campaign as an independent businessman, an ex-police chief and serving reservist Army officer. I had everything the public wanted."

Mr Hurley who works as a media pundit - commenting on issues such as Jimmy Saville and murder of the Claygate family in the French Alps - said he will now commit his time to his new role, despite earlier saying at he would only do the £70,000 job part time.

He said: "As an Army reservist I do spend my time involved with the Army, but my business plans will now have to go on hold. At the hustings I did say this role would not be my only source of income.

"But I come from a family of police officers. Public safety and the reasons for policing are in my blood."

Asked about his pledge to set up local policing boards so he could hear the views of the public, he said these will be run by borough commanders rather than himself.

He said they will collect the views of neighbourhood groups and neighbourhood watch schemes which will be filtered back to his office so he can have "a measured view of crime in the 11 boroughs".

As well as running a website where he can be contacted by the public, he promised to visit a different borough each month, to meet with leaders of the councils and chief executives to discuss the public’s crime concerns.

One of the first things he wants to review is the planned sell-off of police stations. He confirmed that he will oppose privatisation of the police which he feels is "not the best way to deliver policing".