ONE thousand people registered an interest in becoming a West Midlands Police constable in the first two hours of a pre-registration website being launched today (Monday February 10).
Traffic to www.west-midlands.police.uk rocketed after the site went live at midday - with up to 1,800 visitors viewing the page at its peak.
Aspiring PCs are now able to submit their details if they are interested in one of 450 posts available over the next two years.
The force’s recruitment freeze is about to end and a new application process will open as the search begins for a new group of recruits.
There is no cap on the number of people able to register their interest ahead of the formal application process which will start in April.
Police and Crime Commissioner Bob Jones said: "After nearly four years without any new officers, this is a great opportunity to infuse the force with new skills and experience and I’m sure we will get lots of excellent candidates. It is a real priority to bring in officers with the skills needed for policing over the next 30 plus years.”
He added: “I am also pleased to announce that we will not require candidates to have the Certificate in Knowledge of Policing at this point. The timing of the recruitment would mean it would be unfair to expect all candidates to have completed the Certificate. However, a qualification equivalent to NVQ level 3 will be required, but people without an NVQ level 3 qualification should not be put off. The recruitment will be running for two years, so there is time to get an appropriate qualification and make an application later on.
“As already agreed, the starting salary for new officers will be £21,999, well above the £19,000 recommended by the Winsor Review, which both reflects the responsibilities of the role and ensures our salary level is competitive with other forces in our region."
West Midlands Police is the second largest police force in the country - covering 348 square miles and serving a population of almost 2.6 million.
Temporary Deputy Chief Constable Sharon Rowe said: "It’s fantastic for us to be able to offer this opportunity, which will help us to provide an even better service by bringing fresh ideas into our workforce, directly from the communities we serve.”
Successful applicants will need to complete two years as a probationary officer after which they will be able to develop their career by working their way up the ranks or specialising in a particular area of policing.
For further information or to register an interest in becoming a police officer visit http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/join-the-force/index.aspx