|Logo of the Hertfordshire Constabulary.|
|Motto||Creating A Safer Hertfordshire|
|Annual budget||£171.4 million|
|Legal personality||Governmental: Government agency|
|Operations jurisdiction*||Police area of Hertfordshire in the country of England, UK|
|Map of police area|
|Legal jurisdiction||England & Wales|
|Constituting instrument||Police Act 1996|
|Headquarters||Welwyn Garden City|
|Constables||2,428 (of which 410 are special constables)|
|Police Community Support Officers||246|
|Police and Crime Commissioner responsible||David Lloyd|
|Agency executive||Andy Bliss, Chief Constable|
|Airbases||RAF Benson & RAF Henlow|
|Helicopters||2 Eurocopter EC 135s|
|* Police area agency: Prescribed geographic area in the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.|
Hertfordshire Constabulary is the territorial police force responsible for policing the county of Hertfordshire in England. Its headquarters is in Welwyn Garden City. The force is headed by Chief Constable Andy Bliss and its manpower consists of over 3,900 police officers and staff, supported by more than 410 special constables.
The Constabulary was founded in 1841, under the County Police Act, five years after the Hertford Borough Police and St Albans Borough Police had been formed. In 1889, the Hertford Borough Police force was merged into Hertfordshire. St Albans remained independent until 1947.
In 1965, the force had an establishment of 1,317 officers and an actual strength of 885.
On 1 April 2010, Hertfordshire Constabulary launched its Local Policing Command (LPC), providing a more efficient and effective way to oversee the delivery of local policing services across the county. Victims of crime and members of the public who make contact with the police should not notice the changes which have been made to protect community policing and crime investigation at every level.
The LPC replaced the previous three area commands, reducing duplication and complexity in how front line officers and staff are managed and supported.
The LPC comprises various units including:
- Intervention and response (responding to 999 calls and on general patrol)
- Neighbourhood (covering local and quality of life issues)
- Plain clothes and detective units (local crime, case investigation, tactical team)
- Intelligence and tasking units
- The LPC is supported by numerous centrally based units such as firearms, dog section, roads policing, air support, control room, forensic services and major crime
Hertfordshire Constabulary operates emergency (999/112) and non-emergency (101) telephone numbers. The Force Communications Room receives an average of 3000 calls a day and prioritises police responses according to the nature of the received call.
The constabulary also complies fully with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and has been approved by the Information Commissioner. The force maintains a 'transparent' service, whilst restricting some information for security purposes.
Hertfordshire Constabulary regularly co-operates with neighbouring forces in joint operations, including a joint major crime unit with Bedfordshire Police. It participates in the Chiltern Air Support Unit, in partnership with Thames Valley Police and Bedfordshire Police, which operates helicopters from RAF Benson and RAF Henlow.
Proposals made by Charles Clarke, the then Home Secretary, on 20 March 2006 would have seen the force merge with neighbouring forces Bedfordshire Police and Essex Police to form a strategic police force. However, in July 2006, the then Prime Minister Tony Blair signalled that police force mergers will not be forced through by the central government, and given the amount of local opposition to such mergers it is not expected that any voluntary mergers will be carried out.
Officers killed in the line of duty
The Police Memorial Trust lists and commemorates all British police officers killed in the line of duty and erects memorials to some of those officers. Since 1900, the following officers of Hertfordshire Constabulary are listed by the Trust as having been killed while attempting to prevent, stop or solve a criminal act:
- PC Frank Edwin Hulme, 1958 (collapsed and died after a violent arrest)
- PC Arthur William Burch and PC Anthony Richard Silcock, 1960 (their vehicle crashed during a police pursuit)
- WPC Mandy Dawn Rayner, 1982 (fatally injured when her stationary vehicle was struck during a police pursuit)
- PC Francis John Mason QGM, 1988 (shot, posthumously awarded the Queen's Gallantry Medal)
- Law enforcement in the United Kingdom
- List of law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom
- Table of police forces in the United Kingdom
- The Thin Blue Line, Police Council for Great Britain Staff Side Claim for Undermanning Supplements, 1965
- "Police forces 'to be cut to 24'". BBC News. 2006-03-20. Retrieved 2009-08-21.
- "Blair accused of wasting police time on mergers", Daily Telegraph, 13 July 2006.