‘Beds Police has all the resources it needs’ claims Home Office

Policing Minister, Brandon Lewis MP
Policing Minister, Brandon Lewis MP

The minister for policing plans to meet with the chief constable of Bedfordshire Police after the force was rated worst in the country.

Beds Police were rated ‘inadequate’ in the report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), published today.

Brandon Lewis, minister for policing and the fire service said: “I am concerned to see Bedfordshire Police graded as inadequate. I will be discussing HMIC’s findings with the chief constable, to seek urgent assurances that the force has adequate plans in place to make the necessary improvements as quickly as possible.

“We will be monitoring closely the next round of HMIC inspections and hope to see a marked and rapid improvement.”

Beds Police is due to receive £100.8m funding in its 2017/18 settlement, provided the force “maximises its precept”. That is £1.2m more than it received in 2015/16.

The HMIC report into Bedfordshire Police stated it had funding issues, and crime levels that were operationally “challenging” for a small force.

Nevertheless, a Home Office spokesman said: “The public should be in no doubt that the Police have the resources they need and overall, police funding has been protected in a fair funding deal since the Spending Review in 2015.

“Decisions on the operational deployment of resources are matters for Chief Constables, in association with Police and Crime Commissioners, but there is no question that the police still have the resources to do their important work.”