Funding: How Are the Police Funded in the UK?

  • Mark Roycroft


The reserach took place against a backdrop of financial uncertainty for the Police in the UK and an average 20% cut in funding. Most Police reform appeared to be motivated by financial concerns and the interviewees were concerned that well thought reform may produce the most efficient model rather than those driven by financial imperatives. The funding of police forces in the UK especially in England and Wales is a complex mix of local and national funding. The forces are top-sliced for the IPCC, HMIC, the College of Policing, Regional Organised Crime Units (ROCUs) and the Natioanal Crime Agency (NCA). The PCCs provided commentary on these arrangements and many PCCs felt that the mechanism needed an overhaul especially over the funding formula (see the following sections) of 2015. Chief Constables are expected to meet an array of demands from crime problems to public order situations, terrorism and staff pay with PCCs in ultimate control of the budget. The Chief Constable of a small force, CC23, explained that they were being drip fed money for the force (from the PCC) when they needed access to millions of pounds rather than thousands. This did not negate accountability but the CC was simply asking for a workable structure for financing the force. Most Chief Constables and PCCs wanted reform of the funding process for the forces. CC29 wanted to get rid of the precept (see below), and CC30 stated that present arrangements were ‘unsustainable’. While the threat to the forces remained high, the funding of the forces appeared to be a patchwork arrangement with high crime areas not necessarily getting the funding they deserved. CC1 commented that savings ‘happen only once following collaboration measures’.


Private Sector Police Force Innovation Fund Public Police Funding Formula 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Roycroft
    • 1
  1. 1.University of East LondonStratfordUnited Kingdom

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