Skip to content

Hampshire 2015

Read more about Hampshire 2015

This is HMIC’s second assessment of the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy with which Hampshire Constabulary keeps people safe and reduces crime. PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) gives you information about how your local police force is performing in several important areas. It does this in a way that is comparable both across England and Wales, and year-on-year.

The extent to which Hampshire Constabulary is effective at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

The extent to which Hampshire Constabulary is efficient at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

The extent to which Hampshire Constabulary is legitimate at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

This year, for the first time, we have assessed leadership across the force. The assessment has led to a narrative rather than graded judgment, which is summarised below.

Read more about my assessment of Hampshire Constabulary’s performance this year, including where I would like to see improvements next year.

Zoë Billingham, Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary

Read the transcript of the video

Contact Zoë Billingham

HMI’s observations

I am very pleased with the performance of Hampshire Constabulary in keeping people safe and reducing crime. Some of the improvements that the force has made are noteworthy.

Hampshire Constabulary is good at preventing crime, anti-social behaviour and keeping people safe. The force remains committed to keeping officers working in neighbourhoods and it continues to provide a visible presence in communities through dedicated neighbourhood officers. This helps the force work effectively with partners, tackling matters of concern to local communities, and identifying and managing the most serious repeat offenders.

Although the force generally supports vulnerable people well, I have some concerns about the force’s response to victims of domestic abuse: risk assessments are on occasions being completed over the telephone without an officer seeing the victim in person. I welcome the steps taken by the force to review this practice.

I would like to commend the force for the carefully considered innovation it has demonstrated this year. Through changes to its workforce model and how it provides support services, it has altered how it uses its resources to meet the challenges of policing the area with reduced funding. It is an efficient force with very well-prepared plans to achieve further savings.

I am pleased with the way in which the force engages and communicates with the communities of Hampshire. The force has an established set of values that promote ethical behaviour, which are well understood by the workforce.

Description of force area

Hampshire Constabulary provides policing services to the county of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Although there are some areas of deprivation, Hampshire has areas of marked affluence. Around 1.9 people mainly live in the urban centres which include the cities of Southampton, Portsmouth and Winchester, the towns of Basingstoke and Farnborough as well as the town of Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The population is increased by university students and the large numbers who visit, socialise in, or travel through the area each year. The transport infrastructure also includes major rail stations, an airport and major sea ports.

The proportion of areas in Hampshire that are predicted to present a very high challenge to the police is broadly in line with the national average. These are characterised by social deprivation or a concentration of commercial premises (including licensed premises), and in some cases both. Providing services across the entirety of the force area is hindered by the road network.

Working arrangements

The force works in partnership with Thames Valley Police, with one senior officer responsible for roads policing, firearms and public order capabilities for both forces. Similar plans to share contact management arrangements are well advanced, with some elements already in place.

Changes are being made to the chief officer team and a new chief constable will be appointed in early 2016.

The force shares support functions such as human resources, finance, and administration with Hampshire County Council and Hampshire Fire and Rescue.

Effectiveness

In our effectiveness inspection, we judged Hampshire Constabulary to be good at keeping people safe and reducing crime. The force works well with local partner organisations to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour; it has dedicated resources to enable it to work within neighbourhoods to tackle issues of concern to communities. On the whole the force investigates crime well and generally supports vulnerable people well but there is room for improvement in the way the force deals with some vulnerable victims of crime. It has improved its approach to tackling serious and organised crime; and also works very well with partners to identify and manage the most serious repeat offenders to prevent re-offending and protect the public. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their overall effectiveness so comparison of their year-on-year effectiveness is not possible.

Efficiency

Hampshire Constabulary is very well prepared to face its future financial challenges. The force has a strong track record of making savings, robust financial management and well-developed plans to achieve further savings. It has introduced a new workforce model to manage within a reducing budget. In last year’s value for money inspection, which considered how forces had met the challenge of the previous spending review period, Hampshire was judged to be good.

Legitimacy

The force has a well-established set of values promoting ethical behaviour, that the chief constable has championed personally. The workforce understand these values and the importance of dealing with the public in a fair and polite way. Hampshire Constabulary is effective in engaging and communicating with its communities. The force complies with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme and Taser is used fairly and appropriately by the force. This is the first time HMIC has graded forces on their legitimacy, so no year-on-year comparison is possible.

Leadership

Hampshire Constabulary demonstrates strong and effective leadership at all levels of its workforce and has communicated a clearly-defined set of leadership principles which the workforce knows well. The ‘Leadership Programme’ is evidence of how the force develops its leaders to demonstrate the progressive, inclusive and responsive style of leadership necessary while the force changes radically its organisational structure and operating model. HMIC found in Hampshire Constabulary a strong sense of purpose, clear future plans and priorities and a workforce that chief officers both care for and about.

Insights from other inspections

HMIC undertakes other inspections in addition to the PEEL programme. Since the last PEEL assessment there have been seven reports published on inspections that included Hampshire Constabulary. More detail on some of these inspections can be found under the Other inspections section.

Looking ahead to PEEL 2016

In the year ahead, I will be interested to see how the force responds to this assessment, and to the cause of concern and areas for improvement that HMIC has identified in the last year.

I will be particularly interested to see:

  • the outcome of the review into the practice of conducting some risk assessments for victims of domestic abuse over the telephone and how the force’s response then improves;
  • how the force ensures regular and active supervision of investigations, to check quality and progress; and
  • how the new chief officer team takes this work forwards and the extent to which it improves the police service for the people of Hampshire.

In May 2016, like the majority of forces in England and Wales, the force will see the second elections for its police and crime commissioner.

Effectiveness

How effective is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 18/02/2016
Good

Overall HMIC judges that Hampshire Constabulary is good at keeping people safe and reducing crime and anti-social behaviour. The constabulary works well with local partner organisations to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour; it has dedicated resources to enable it to work within neighbourhoods to tackle issues of concern to communities. On the whole the constabulary investigates crime well and generally supports vulnerable people well but there is room for improvement in the way the force deals with some vulnerable victims of crime. It has improved its approach to tackling serious and organised crime; and also works very well with partners to identify and manage the most serious repeat offenders to prevent re-offending and protect the public. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their overall effectiveness so comparison of their year-on-year effectiveness is not possible.

Overall HMIC judges Hampshire Constabulary is good at keeping people safe and reducing crime. Preventing crime, keeping people safe and reducing anti-social behaviour are clear priorities for the constabulary.

The constabulary is aware that some levels of recorded crime have increased over the past year but is confident that this is a consequence of improved crime recording practices, rather than an increase in actual crime. A further period of monitoring is required before a definitive conclusion can be reached. The constabulary’s approach to investigating crime and managing offenders is good. However, the unexpected increase in recorded crime has meant that some officers have been carrying a higher than anticipated workload, and supervisors’ reviews of less serious crime have not always taken place.

The constabulary is highly effective at preventing re-offending by working with partner organisations through a variety of different schemes, which help to identify, manage and divert vulnerable offenders away from further offending.

The constabulary effectively identifies repeat and vulnerable victims, and responds to them well. It investigates crime committed against most vulnerable victims well, usually ensuring the appropriate level of expertise is applied dependent on the level of the complexity of the investigation. However, the practice of resolving certain incidents involving potentially vulnerable people over the telephone should be reviewed so that the constabulary can be assured that it is consistently providing the right level of support and protection to all who need it.

Hampshire Constabulary is good at identifying and tackling serious and organised crime. The constabulary understands the threat from serious and organised crime and it works well to disrupt and dismantle organised criminal groups which pose the greatest risk to communities. The approach would benefit from better communication with the public to raise awareness.

The leadership has strong oversight of the force’s ability to respond to national threats, such as terrorism, serious cyber-crime incidents and child sexual abuse. Its own arrangements for ensuring it can meet its national obligations in this regard (such as planning, testing and exercising) are good.

 

View the four questions for effectiveness

Efficiency

How efficient is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 20/10/2015
Good

HMIC found that Hampshire Constabulary is very well prepared to face its future financial challenges. The constabulary has a strong track record of making savings, robust financial management and well-developed plans to achieve further savings. It has introduced a new workforce model to manage within a reducing budget. In last year’s value for money inspection, which considered how forces had met the challenge of the first spending review period, Hampshire was judged to be good.

HMIC judges Hampshire Constabulary to be good. The constabulary has implemented an ambitious new operating model, designed to meet demand more efficiently with reduced resources. This is based on a thorough understanding of current demand and is a significant change that has affected almost all the workforce. The model is planned to be capable of achieving effective policing through to 2017.

Hampshire Constabulary is willing to innovate and work collaboratively to provide better services more efficiently. Its plans to extend the collaboration with Thames Valley Police are aimed to further reduce cost and maintain services. The partnership with other local authorities is now providing all human resources, finance and administration services to the constabulary and has achieved significant savings.

Hampshire is open to the use of new technology, making good use of body-worn video equipment, and intends to expand its use of mobile data. It has well-developed plans to use IT to allow the public to contact and interact more easily with the constabulary.

The constabulary achieved all of its savings targets; it has a balanced budget for 2015/16 and a comfortable level of reserves. Hampshire’s detailed savings plans provide us with confidence that the further savings required by 2016/17 will be achieved.

Savings plans beyond that are well-developed. The constabulary expects that increased collaboration and the ongoing review of estates will deliver further savings. The constabulary is confident that their new structure and operating model can be adjusted to achieve further savings if necessary. The constabulary will also consider using reserves to meet short term needs and smooth their transition.

 

View the three questions for efficiency

Legitimacy

How legitimate is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 11/02/2016
Good

The constabulary has a well-established set of values that promote ethical behaviour that have been personally championed by the chief constable. Staff understand these values and the importance of dealing with the public in a fair and polite way. Hampshire Constabulary is effective in engaging and communicating with its communities. The constabulary complies with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme and Taser is used fairly and appropriately by the constabulary.

This is the first time HMIC has graded forces on their legitimacy, so no year-on-year comparison is possible.

Hampshire Constabulary has an established and well-promoted set of values that the workforce understands. It has taken the decision to maintain these values and to introduce the Code of Ethics alongside them. The constabulary has a new health and wellbeing framework which provides a good range of support to the workforce. The constabulary deals with public complaints and allegations of misconduct fairly and without bias.

When HMIC looked at how well the constabulary understands and successfully engages with all the people it serves, we found that the constabulary successfully works with communities and makes good use of social media.

As a result, the constabulary understands local priorities, and keeps communities informed about how it is addressing them.

Stop and search and Taser are two ways that the police can prevent crime and protect the public. However, they can be intrusive and forceful methods, and it is therefore vital the police use them fairly and appropriately. HMIC found that the constabulary complies with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme. Officers clearly understand their responsibility to exercise good judgement when considering the use of Taser and the importance of recording that rationale to allow public scrutiny. Taser is used fairly and appropriately by the constabulary.

View the four questions for legitimacy

Other inspections

How well has the force performed in our other inspections?

In addition to the three core PEEL pillars, HMIC carries out inspections of a wide range of policing activity throughout the year. Some of these are conducted alongside the PEEL inspections (for instance, our 2016 leadership assessment); others are joint inspections.

Findings from these inspections are published separately to the main PEEL reports, but are taken into account when producing the rounded assessment of each force's performance.

Leadership

Last updated 25/02/2016

As part of HMIC’s annual all-force inspections into police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy (PEEL) in 2015, HMIC assessed how well led forces are at every rank and grade of the organisation and across all areas inspected in PEEL. We reviewed how well a force understands and is developing its leaders; whether it has set a clear and compelling future direction; and how well it motivates and engages the workforce.

Hampshire Constabulary demonstrates strong and effective leadership at all levels of its workforce and has communicated a clearly-defined set of leadership principles which the workforce knows well. The Leadership Programme is evidence of how the constabulary develops its leaders to demonstrate the progressive, inclusive and responsive style of leadership necessary while the constabulary radically changes its organisational structure and operating model. HMIC found in Hampshire Constabulary a strong sense of purpose, clear future plans and priorities and a workforce that chief officers both care for and about.

View the four questions for leadership

Other reports

Last updated 22/02/2016

This section sets out the reports published by HMIC this year that help to better understand the performance of Hampshire Constabulary.

View other reports

Key facts

Force Area

1,602 square miles

Population

1.94m people 8% local 10 yr change

Workforce

81% frontline 78% national level
2.6 per 1000 population 3.6 national level
23% change in local workforce since 2010 15% national change since 2010

Victim-based crimes

0.05 per person 0.05 national level
Local 5 year trend National 5 year trend (no change)

Cost

43p per person per day local 55p per person per day national

Points of context provided by the force

Hampshire has large rural and urban populations totalling more than 2 million and critical infrastructure including major ports and refineries.

The force won awards for joint work on the UK’s first Forensic Innovation Centre and other innovations such as Cautioning Against Relationship Abuse.

Police and crime plan priorities

The force is reorganising its workforce, embracing technology, and collaborating with other forces and local partnerships.