Business leaders could become police chiefs

The recommendations that the Home Secretary is expected to bring forward are based on a wide-ranging review of police pay and conditions by former rail regulator Tom Winsor.

His final report was published last March, and also included proposals for pay rises for high-performing officers, and compulsory annual fitness tests for all officers.

Tom Winsor delivered the widest-ranging review of police pay and conditions in more than 30 years. Credit: PA

His ideas on recruitment include allowing foreign police chiefs to run forces here, a fast track scheme to rise from civilian to inspector in three years, and direct entry at superintendent level for senior people from other professions.

It would mean military officers and business leaders could be recruited into senior posts.

Mr Winsor has previously said he wanted to end the idea of policing as an intellectually undemanding occupation - and that the "brightest and best" applicants with skills "distinctly above those of factory workers" were needed.

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Police recruitment shake-up

The Government has unveiled a radical shake-up of police recruitment rules today, which will include allowing new starters to skip the compulsory two years on the beat and foreign police chiefs to run British forces for the first time.