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Thames Valley 2017

Read more about Thames Valley 2017

This is HMICFRS’ fourth PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) assessment of Thames Valley. PEEL is designed to give the public information about how their local police force is performing in several important areas, in a way that is comparable both across England and Wales, and year on year. The assessment is updated throughout the year with our inspection findings and reports.

The extent to which the force is effective at keeping people safe and reducing crime is not yet graded.

The extent to which the force is efficient at keeping people safe and reducing crime is outstanding.

The extent to which the force is legitimate at keeping people safe and reducing crime is not yet graded.

The efficiency inspection findings are published below.

Zoë Billingham, Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary

Contact Zoë Billingham

HMI's observations

My overall assessment of Thames Valley’s performance will be published in spring 2018, following the publication of the legitimacy and effectiveness inspections in December 2017 and March 2018, respectively.

Effectiveness

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

To be graded
View the five questions for effectiveness

Efficiency

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

Last updated 09/11/2017
Outstanding

Thames Valley Police is judged to be outstanding in the efficiency with which it keeps people safe and reduces crime. Our overall judgment this year is an improvement on last year when the force was judged to be good for efficiency overall. The force is judged to be outstanding in its understanding of demand; its use of resources to manage demand is also assessed to be outstanding; and its planning for future demand is judged to be good.

Thames Valley Police has an outstanding understanding of the demand for its services that is based on detailed analysis of a wide range of data, including from partner agencies such as the ambulance and fire and rescue services. The force is committed to understanding hidden demand and uses innovative technology to help it identify and tackle demand that is less likely to be reported. It takes steps to make sure that demand is not suppressed.

The force is also outstanding in how well it uses its resources. It has a good understanding of workforce skills and abilities through using the College of Policing’s competency and values framework, which sets out the national standards for workforce skills. It combines these with locally identified needs such as communication skills to describe and plan for the workforce skills it needs, now and in the future.

The force manages change programmes well, assessing new programmes against agreed criteria and whether proposed changes will support its priorities. The priority-based budgeting process gives the force a comprehensive understanding of the costs of its activities and the effect of moving resources from one part of the force to another. It is able to identify and analyse trends in demand and has a good understanding of likely future demand in many areas of its activities. The force is working with academic partners to include a wider range of information to develop this understanding. It is also is involved in a wide range of good collaborative work with other forces and agencies, and carefully assesses collaborative opportunities based on the benefits to the force.

Thames Valley Police is good in how it plans for the future, and some elements are outstanding. The force has displayed innovation, embracing and investing in technology. It uses external expertise such as financial and specialist IT consultancies to provide additional challenge, scrutiny and expertise for its saving plans. These savings plans project a balanced budget until 2021, but depend on the creation of more efficient ways of working. The force is investing well in its infrastructure to make this process possible.

View the three questions for efficiency

Legitimacy

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

To be graded
View the three questions for legitimacy

Other inspections

How well has the force performed in our other inspections?

In addition to the three core PEEL pillars, HMICFRS 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.

Key facts

Force Area

2216 square miles

Population

2.34m people 10% local 10 yr change

Workforce

75% frontline 78% national level
3.2 per 1000 population 3.6 national level
5% change in local workforce since 2010 15% national change since 2010

Victim-based crimes

0.05 per person 0.06 national level
Local 5 year trend National 5 year trend (no change)

Cost

45p per person per day local 55p per person per day national

Points of context provided by the force

  • The largest non-metropolitan force, Thames Valley polices 3 counties, 2.2m residents and 196 miles of motorway in partnership with 18 local authorities.
  • The force manages significant events alongside major incidents in a changing crime landscape with increases in high-harm and complex offences.

Police and crime plan priorities

Thames Valley PCC Strategic Priorities 2017-21

Five strategic priority areas. ‘Vulnerability’ and ‘Prevention’ are key threads throughout the plan. High risk and harm offenders are targeted under the next two priorities. Police ethics and reform underpins the other four.

1. Vulnerability, with a focus on:

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  • Improving access from criminal justice into mental health
  • Criminal justice experience of victims
  • Hidden abuse
  • Elder abuse

2. Prevention and Early Intervention:

  • Road safety
  • Improving awareness of cybercrime
  • Peer on peer abuse
  • Hate crime
  • Female Genital Mutilation

3. Reducing Re-Offending, including:

  • Gangs and Knife Crime
  • Domestic Violence Perpetrators
  • Pathways into substance misuse services
  • Modernising offender management

4. Serious Organised Crime and Terrorism:

  • Better local public awareness
  • Engendering a “Dare to Share” culture
  • Preventing violent extremism
  • Reducing exploitation of vulnerable people

5. Police Ethics and Reform:

  • Better support for Victims
  • Faster uptake of new technology
  • Improved interactions with young people
  • Improved understanding and management of demand