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Police and Crime Commissioners


BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES. Didnít get to see it myself but understand that Yesterday The Police Service with the best of intent had the like of a stall in Salisbury's Tuesday Market, where at people were advised concerning the forthcoming election of a Police Commissioner. No doubt their attendance was inspired by Government's fear that too few intended to vote, thereby further discrediting the whole idea of Police Commissioners.

Who can have faith in candidates who have been selected to represent Political Parties. Possibly though Party Activists merely seek to guide us along a path of righteousness, for unfortunately too few of us the Plebs have the slightest knowledge who these Wiltshire 'wannabes' are, that being so why on the earth should any expect to be voted for? Undoubtedly one such candidate will be returned on a very small turnout, his or her election effected not on his or her own efforts, but on the backs of one or another Party Machine. I have no wish to have the like of a Commissar in charge of our Police Service.

One should bear in mind that it is the incompetence of National Political Parties at grass root level that has landed this country in the mess it currently seems to be in. Although having lived in Wiltshire for over thirty years somehow the intricacies of its local Governance evaded me, possibly those with maverick opinions never were encouraged. Somehow one knows more of Hampshire Local Affairs than those of Wiltshire, for instance know of the candidate the Conservatives there are fielding, cant say he'd have been my choice, but then Hampshire Conservatives have a track record to maintain when it comes to the selection of its candidates.

There has been no call for Police and Crime Commissioners, even though there is a call for change. As I write this the radio advises of the resignation of a Chief Constable. Last week a Deputy Chief Constable was involved in a fatal accident, whilst a while back another was found dead on a Mountain side. Have no wish to be invidious but I believe such tragedies and various resignations are indicative that things are not well in the Police Service. One reads that it is unhappy with its terms of employment, its inability to strike, its Financial cut backs etc. Then too one hears of ethnic groupings in the Service. So far as I am concerned a Police Officer is a Police Officer, and there should be no call for there to be a Black Police Officers Association, nor need for ethnic quotas.

Police Commissioners put one in mind of the pre-war situation when Chief Constables tended to be other than a career Police Officer. Being a retired Colonel was common enough. It was because the Police Force then, was deemed unsatisfactory that the late Lord Trenchard set up the Hendon Police College for the initial recruitment of the brightest and the best, who on passing out of the College were immediately posted with the rank of I believe Junior Inspector. The theory being that Hendon, Sandhurst, Cranwell, and Dartmouth would be on a par. Unfortunately Hendon barely survived the second world war having been deemed to be Politically Incorrect.

Opportunities for Promotion should be available to every Officer, but until that old Officer Entry is restored things in the Police Service are unlikely to run smoothly. Sorry that this is repetitive but it is something that can not be promulgated often enough. 24.10.12. +-


contact : John B. Pope