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Agenda item

Confirmation Hearing for the Chief Constable


The Police and Crime Commissioner presented his report on the Chief Constable Recruitment Process. This report provided formal notification under the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 from the Police and Crime Commissioner to the Police and Crime Panel that the Chief Constable recruitment and selection process has now been completed and the PCC’s preferred candidate is Mr John David Campbell, who was currently the Deputy Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police.


The Police and Crime Panel is required to consider the proposed appointment to scrutinise the appointment process and has a power of veto. The PCC must not make an appointment unless the candidate fulfils all of the eligibility criteria.


Four applications for the vacancy of Chief Constable were received. Information on the advertising and communication strategy, the selection and short listing Panel are within the agenda, including the Independent Member’s report. The candidate was asked at the Selection Panel to give a ten minute presentation following a 40 minute preparation period which was then followed by an inter-active question and answer section which allowed the Panel to explore and challenge the candidates’ abilities against the competencies set out in the College of Policing ‘Competency and Values Framework’.


Candidates were also required to demonstrate considerable leadership, innovation and performance management skills which are considered necessary by the PCC to take Thames Valley Police through a period of further significant challenges facing policing nationally, whilst maintaining Force performance locally.


The PCC proposed his preferred candidate, Mr John David Campbell to the Police and Crime Panel for review and a recommendation as to whether or not he should be appointed.


The following points arose from questions to the preferred candidate:-


          Partnership and collaborative work was at the heart of what Thames Valley Police did, working with local Councils and Community Safety Partnerships. Working jointly in a collective effort provided the best outcomes for communities in terms of safeguarding and community safety.

          The preferred candidate outlined his greatest successes in his career in the Police, which on a local level was described as making peoples’ lives  safer, making  a positive contribution, particularly in relation to neighbourhood policing. As a leader, have given officer’s clarity on their roles and their objectives, setting the vision and providing officers with the necessary tools to carry out their jobs as effectively as possible.

          Reference was made to “County Lines” and how would the preferred candidate deal with this issue which emanated from urban areas but impacted on rural areas.  Reference was made to the need for greater police visibility with more on the street, being more aware of local crime activity, working closely with communities. In relation to “County Lines” and knife crime, a hostile environment was required to prevent perpetrators of such crimes. There needed to be a merging of neighbourhood and response policing to tackle these problems.

          In response to a question about risks and opportunities associated with the increasing use of technology in policing, the Panel was informed that one of the main objectives of introducing new technology was to give police officers better information to enable the safeguarding of the public and to arrest those who committed crimes. The risks could be with national intelligence, to ensure that new technology enabled all Police Forces to share national crime intelligence.

          Reference was made to police stations closing and the need to provide engagement with the public. The use of social media was important to provide important crime prevention information and to offer assurance to the public of Police activity in the fight against crime. An example was given of increased fraud and scams where 80% of these were preventable. Educating and informing the public through social media was important.

          Reference was made to Local Police Area Commanders who had to be involved in an increasing number of time consuming and intensive audits and the impact this had on policing work.

          A question was asked about the allocation of police resources in Thames Valley and particular reference was made to Milton Keynes with its expanding population. The Panel was informed that there was a formula which was used for the allocation of Police Officer resources and Police Community Support Officers and this would be reflected in the numbers in Milton Keynes.

          The public had received information about where the extra funding would be allocated and it was noted that improvements were required to the Police call handling service.   




That, after having received assurance that a full open and fair selection and recruitment process had taken place, with the preferred candidate fulfilling the eligibility criteria, the Panel endorsed the appointment of Mr. John David Campbell to the position of Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police.                               


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