Here is how many extra officers Warwickshire Police will recruit under Government scheme and how the numbers compare to other forces

File image.
File image.

Warwickshire Police's strength is set to increase to over 1,000 front line officers following a Government recruitment drive.

The Home Office has today, October 9, confirmed the officer recruitment targets for every police force in England and Wales for the first year of the drive to increase their ranks by 20,000 over the next three years.

For Warwickshire Police, this will mean an extra 41 officers to be recruited next year.

It is not yet clear how many officers Warwickshire Police will be given the funding to recruit in subsequent years.

The Government drive comes alongside Warwickshire Police's own locally-funded recruitment boost, which is bringing an extra 150 officers to the force.

Philip Seccombe, Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner said: “The news that Warwickshire Police will be able to recruit 41 new police officers next year to help keep our streets safe is one I really do welcome.

"This will bring levels of policing to well over 1,000 front line police officers in Warwickshire and is just the start of action being taken to deliver on the priorities of hardworking, honest, law-abiding people across the county.

“By empowering the police to keep us safe and equipping them with the powers and resources they need to do the job, we are sending a clear message that crime and antisocial behaviour in any form will not be tolerated."

Nationally, police officer strength peaked in 2009 at 143,778.

Critics of the Government's announcement to recruit 20,000 more officers have argued that this is not a radical step.

Rather, they say it is the Government simply restoring the police to the strength it was at before spending cuts were made.

In a document produced for the Home Office in July this year, Warwickshire Police was shown to have one of the lowest rates of police officers to members of the public in the country.

The force came in at number 39 out of 42 forces - with a rate of 143 officers for every 100,000 people.

This equates to 817 officers for Warwickshire's 517,000 residents.

The extra 41 officers is the lowest allocation for any force in the scheme - although Warwickshire is one of the least populated force areas.

For comparison, Dyfed-Powys, with a population of 518,000 and an existing force of 1,145 officers (giving it a higher ratio that Warwickshire of police to members of the public), is set to be given funding to recruit 42 additional officers next year under the scheme.

John Apter, National Chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales said: "Investment in policing is long overdue and for the first time we now have the actual number of officers each local force will increase by in the next year.

"These figures have been based on the current funding formula models and while this method is not perfect, I accept it is the only solution available to deliver the numbers quickly in year one.

"We now need to ensure that the formula is revisited for future years to ensure a fairer allocation of officers across all forces, but this is certainly a positive start and will provide a much-needed boost to my members and the communities they serve."