GWENT Police spent more than half a million pounds on severance pay in 2012/13, figures have revealed.

The figures released by the College of Policing are part of the Chief Officers Pay and Rewards Register, which brings together details from forces’ accounts on a single website for the first time.

The figures show Carmel Napier, then chief constable of Gwent, received a bonus of £6,653 for the year ending March 2013. For the same year, the force spent £618,677 on severance pay or 'exit packages', which included 14 compulsory redundancies and 30 other agreed departures.

For the years previous, the force spent just £9,406 on exit packages as of March 2012.

A Gwent Police spokeswoman said: “The payments are for redundancy payments and for those staff whose posts were disestablished.

“Some remained on the redeployment register for up to six months while others left earlier with agreement.”

As of March 13, the total remuneration including pension contributions, for the chief constable role, was £177,299, as opposed to £175,634 the year previous.

Gwent Police are over half way in meeting the multimillion-pound budget cuts which must be made by the end of 2017. The force launched savings programme, Staying Ahead in 2009 as it was faced with the challenge to make savings of £47m by the end of 2017. A Strategy and Performance board meeting earlier this month, heard the force had saved £27,173,000 so far.