POLICE in Somerset are set to receive an additional £22.6million, the Conservatives have revealed.

The budget would mean an increase of 7.4 per cent for the force, and is part of a £1.1billion increase announced by the government.

The plan for additional funds comes on top of the Conservatives' promise to add 20,000 police officers to the streets - with Avon and Somerset due to receive 137 additional officers this year.

Mark Shelford is the Conservative candidate to become Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner.

Elections are set to be held in May, with current PCC Sue Mountstevens (Independent) already declaring she will not stand again.

Mr Shelford said: "I am delighted that police funding in Avon and Somerset could increase by up to £22.6million next year.

“We made a commitment to people at the election that we would crack down on crime and back our brave police to get on with the job, and we are wasting no time in delivering on that promise now, particularly around visible policing, rural crime, targeting organised crime, drugs, violent and knife crime, child sexual exploitation and cyber crime.

“The Conservative Party will always ensure the police have the powers and resources needed to keep our citizens and communities safe.”

This is the biggest funding increase in 2010, when the David Cameron-led government initiated its austerity programme.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “This government is delivering on the people’s priorities by giving policing the biggest funding increase in a decade.

“It will mean more officers tackling the crime blighting our streets, so people can feel safe in their communities.

“The police must now make full use of this significant investment to deliver for the public.”