West Mercia Police

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West Mercia Police
England - West Mercia Constabulary (bell) (6505643385).jpg
West Mercia Police Bell
West Mercia Police Badge
Agency overview
Formed 1 October 1967
Preceding agencies
  • Worcestershire Constabulary
  • Herefordshire Constabulary
  • Shropshire Constabulary
  • Worcester City Police
Employees 4,195[1]
Volunteers 288[2]
Annual budget £203.6 million[1]
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* Police area of Herefordshire, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin and Worcestershire in the country of England, UK
England Police Forces (West Mercia).svg
Map of police area
Size 7,428 km²/2,868 sqmi[1]
Population 1.19 million[1]
Legal jurisdiction England & Wales
Constituting instrument Police Act 1996
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Hindlip Hall, Worcestershire
West Mercia Police HQ
PCs 2,367 (of which 224 are special constables)[1]
PCSOs 283
PCC responsible Bill Longmore
Agency executives
Child agency Central Motorway Police Group, Central Counties Air Operations Unit
Territorial Policing Units
Police Stations 48
Cars 609
Vans 140
Motorbikes 37
Helicopters Single aircraft EC135 of the Central Counties Air Operations Unit
* Police area agency: Prescribed geographic area in the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.
Helm of the West Mercia Police

West Mercia Police, formerly known as West Mercia Constabulary, is the territorial police force responsible for policing the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire (including Telford and Wrekin) and Worcestershire in England. The force area covers 2,868 square miles (7,430 km2) making it the fourth largest police area in England and Wales. The resident population of the area is 1.19 million.[1]

The force is divided into five divisions and represent a very wide spread of policing environments from densely populated urban conurbations on the edge of Birmingham as well as Telford, Shrewsbury, and Worcester, to sparsely populated rural areas found in the rest of the force area.

As of June 2014, the force employs 2367 police officers, 283 Police Community Support Officers, 1779 police staff and 224 members of the Special Constabulary.[1] West Mercia is Home Office force 22 and call sign YK.

The force has its headquarters in the historical manor house and grounds of Hindlip Hall on the outskirts of the city of Worcester. Its badge combines the heraldry of Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Shropshire.

The force was formed on 1 October 1967, by the merger of the Worcestershire Constabulary, Herefordshire Constabulary, Shropshire Constabulary and Worcester City Police.[3] It lost territory to West Midlands Police when that was constituted on 1 April 1974. It changed its name from "West Mercia Constabulary" to "West Mercia Police" on 5 May 2009.[4]

West Mercia is a partner, alongside two other forces, in the Central Motorway Police Group. In 2013 an alliance was formed with Warwickshire Police.

Paul West, QPM, who retired as Chief Constable on 31 July 2011 is the longest serving Chief Constable in the force's history. He was succeeded by his Deputy Chief Constable, David Shaw, who took up the senior post on 1 August 2011.[5]

Force area divisions

The force is organised into five territorial policing units (TPUs)[1] which are alphabetically coded geographically from south to north (C D E F & G). Operating across three counties, West Mercia Police maintains many stations, with each TPU having an HQ Police station. The TPUs are further divided into Safer Neighbourhood Teams (SNTs); there are 82 SNTs across the force.

Listed below are the TPUs and police stations maintained by the force:

C - South Worcestershire

Covering Worcester, Malvern, Droitwich, Pershore and Evesham

West Mercia Police also owns Defford, formerly RAF Defford

D - North Worcestershire

Covering Kidderminster, Bromsgrove and Redditch

  • Kidderminster (TPU HQ / Custody)
  • Stourport
  • Bewdley
  • Hagley
  • Wythall
  • Rubery
  • Bromsgrove
  • Redditch

E - Herefordshire

West Mercia Police also rents offices from BT in Hereford

F - Shropshire (excluding Telford & Wrekin)

G - Telford & Wrekin

Volunteer Police Cadets scheme

A volunteer cadet scheme had existed in the Telford division since the early 1990s and in September 2013, the scheme was expanded force-wide, creating a new detachment of police cadets in each Territorial Policing Unit area. Each detachment is headquartered in the respective TPU HQ, except the South Worcestershire detachment, who are based at Tudor Grange Academy.

In 2010, the Telford Cadets Detachment was awarded The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service.[6]

According to West Mercia Police's Website, "The scheme is aimed at young people who wish to engage in a program that offers them an opportunity to gain a practical understanding of policing, develop their spirit of adventure and good citizenship, while supporting their local policing priorities through volunteering, working with partner agencies and positive participation in their communities."

A new intake of approximately 15 new cadets per detachment occurs annually. New recruits must be aged 16 or over and have finished secondary education. Young people can remain as cadets for up to two years. Cadets can then consider joining the force at age 18, becoming a cadet leader in their detachment, or leaving the scheme altogether.[7]

Each detachment is led by several Cadet Leaders who are Police Officers, PCSOs and Police Volunteers from the force.

Merger plans

In November 2005, the government announced major reforms of policing in England and Wales, which raised the prospect of West Mercia Constabulary being merged with other forces in the West Midlands region.

Under final proposals made by the Home Secretary on 6 February 2006, it would merge with Staffordshire Police, Warwickshire Constabulary and West Midlands Police to form a single strategic force for the West Midlands region. This came under particular criticism from West Mercia Constabulary, especially as it was rated the best force in the country. Instead, the constabulary wishes to remain a separate force. The proposals are also unpopular with many of the local authorities in the West Mercia area.

When John Reid became Home Secretary in 2006, he put plans to merge the force – on hold, and now it seems likely that the plans might be scrapped altogether. As of 12 July 2006 the merger plans have been on hold.

The coalition government has not made any indication of re-introducing any such plans.

Warwickshire alliance

In 2013 the West Mercia and Warwickshire police forces formed an alliance, sharing certain administrative functions in order to save both forces money.


See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 "The West Mercia Environment | Joint Policing Plan 2010-13 | Our Publications | About Us". Westmercia.police.uk. Retrieved 6 November 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. http://police.homeoffice.gov.uk/performance-and-measurement/performance-assessment/assessments-2007-2008/west-mercia
  3. [1][dead link]
  4. "West Mercia Police Authority". West Mercia Police Authority. 16 November 2012. Retrieved 15 October 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "New Chief Constable Appointed To Succeed Paul West". West Mercia Police. Retrieved 16 October 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. http://www.shropshirestar.com/lifestyle/blogs/2010/06/24/police-blog-cadets-are-a-credit-to-telford
  7. West Mercia Police Cadet website
  8. Detail from a copy of Policing Shropshire published by K A F Brewin Books in 1994 with ISBN 0-947731-01-6

External links