Royal Gibraltar Police

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Royal Gibraltar Police
Royal Gibraltar Police logo.svg
Common nameGibraltar Police
Agency overview
Formed25 June, 1830
Preceding agency
  • Gibraltar Police
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdictionGIB
Gibraltar locator map.svg
Royal Gibraltar Police's jurisdiction (beige)
Size6.8 km²
Legal jurisdictionAs per operations jurisdiction
Governing bodyGovernment of Gibraltar
General nature
Operational structure
HeadquartersNew Mole House, Rosia Road
Royal appointee responsible
Agency executive
  • Richard Ullger
  • New Mole House, Rosia Road
  • Casemates square
PrisonsHis Majesty's Prison, Gibraltar
Patrol carsYes
Armed response vehiclesYes
Royal Gibraltar Police

The Royal Gibraltar Police (RGP) is, along with His Majesty's Customs (Gibraltar), the principal civilian law enforcement agency in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. It is the oldest police force in the Commonwealth of Nations outside the United Kingdom.

The Royal Gibraltar Police, previously the Gibraltar Police Force, was formed in 1830, only nine months after Sir Robert Peel founded the Metropolitan Police in London. It was Peel who sent one of his officers to Gibraltar to form the Gibraltar Police Force.[1]

The force was granted the "Royal" prefix by Queen Elizabeth II in 1992.

The force works with the Gibraltar Defence Police (GDP), His Majesty's Customs (Gibraltar), Border and Coastguard Agency (Gibraltar), HM Prison Service and the military Joint Provost and Security Unit.

Personnel strength and deployment[edit]

The force, referred to locally as the RGP, currently numbers over 220 officers, who are divided into a number of units. These include CID, Drug Squad, Special Branch, Firearms Unit, Scene of Crime Examiners, Traffic Department, Marine Section and the Operations Division.

From its inception, up until 1999 when St. John Ambulance Brigade took over, the Gibraltar Police provided the territory's only emergency ambulance service, using officers seconded from the Operations Division. The RGP also acted as immigration officers at all entry points until the early 1990s.

The current headquarters is at New Mole House Police Station, Rosia Road. The Previous HQ used to be at 120 Irish Town. There are plans to turn this into a Police Museum. There is a sub-station at Casemates Square.

New Mole House, Royal Gibraltar Police headquarters


In general the uniformed officers of the Gibraltar force follow British police models in their dress. On foot patrol, male constables and sergeants, like their counterparts in England and Wales, Jersey, Guernsey, the Isle of Man and Bermuda, wear the traditional headgear of the "bobby on the beat", correctly known as the "custodian helmet", which is similar to some Army helmets and was adopted by the Metropolitan Police in London in 1863 to replace the top hat formerly worn, other forces then following suit. The helmet is traditionally made of cork covered outside by felt or serge-like material that matches the tunic.

As in many police forces in England and Wales, the Brunswick star is used as the basis for the force badge, with a central device representing Gibraltar. The badge appears also as the helmet plate.[2]

Royal Gibraltar Police Inspector in everyday police uniform
Female uniformed police officer

Rank structure[edit]

The RGP rank structure follows the usual UK police pattern, but with fewer ranks. The chief police officer is known as the Commissioner The RGP ranks consist of:

Royal Gibraltar Police ranks and insignia[3][4][5]
Rank Commissioner Assistant commissioner Superintendent Chief inspector Inspector Senior Sergeant Sergeant Constable
Epaulette insignia Chief Constable.svg Assistant Chief Constable.svg Supt.svg CInsp.svg Insp.svg RGP Senior Sergeant.svg PS Epaulette.svg UK police constable epaulette, 2016.svg
Royal Gibraltar Police Chief Inspector in No. 1 dress uniform

RGP Marine Section[edit]

The Royal Gibraltar Police force have a marine section located in the Royal Navy Base, This facility is jointly used with the Gibraltar Defence Police Marine Section. Since 2012 there have been many new additions to the unit including jet skis and larger vessels.[6]

The role of the RGP Marine Section is to enforce the law in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters and this often includes co-operation with other local and international agencies.[7] The RGP Marine Section plays a vital role in anti-drug smuggling operations for the local area.

Vessels of the Royal Gibraltar Police Marine Section:

  • Sir William Jackson
  • Sir Joshua Hassan
  • Sir Francis Richards
  • Sir John Chapple

Chief of Police 1830 to 1937. As from 1937 Commissioner of Police[edit]

  • 1830 H. Morgan
  • 1859 C. Armstrong
  • 1870 G.F. Stohelin
  • 1875 S. Blair
  • 1882 W.F. Cottrell
  • 1883 W. Seed
  • 1895 J.L. Bennet
  • 1911 J. Cochrane
  • 1927 W.S. Gulloch
  • 1937 D.S. Gowing
  • 1953 A.L. Abraham MVO.
  • 1960 P.G. Owen
  • 1962 L. Hannon MBE.
  • 1968 J.D.O. Bird QPM.
  • 1975 R.B. Gordon QPM.
  • 1975 R.S. Williams
  • 1980 M. Rowling
  • 1984 Joseph C. Morello OBE CPM.
  • 1987 Joseph L. Canepa CPM.
  • 1997 Alan J. Castree QPM
  • 2001 Joseph Ullger QPM CPM
  • 2006 Louis Wink OBE CPM
  • 2012 Edward Yome CPM
  • 2018 Ian McGrail
  • 2020 Richard Ullger


RGP officers employ a wide variety of equipment for police work, such as motor vehicles, sea vessels, arrest equipment and radios. Vehicles carry the UK police 'battenburg' style livery, with blue flashing lights and sirens. Unlike the UK, however, these are left hand drive vehicles, as traffic in Gibraltar drives on the right.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Royal Gibraltar Police website". Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
  2. ^ " - Judiciary and Law". Archived from the original on 20 April 2006. Retrieved 23 October 2005.
  3. ^ "Royal Gibraltar Police - Command Team". Archived from the original on 17 November 2021. Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  4. ^ "Introduction of Senior Sergeant Role". Archived from the original on 17 November 2021. Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  5. ^ "Royal Gibraltar Police: Rank Structure". Archived from the original on 17 November 2021. Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  6. ^ "Your Gibraltar TV 'RGP Vessel, Sir William Jackson, Blessed'". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  7. ^ "Your Gibraltar TV 'Cooperation at Sea - Guardia Civil and RGP". Archived from the original on 11 September 2013. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  8. ^ GPA Policing Plan 2012, accessed 24 October 2012[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]