A BIG drive to recruit more police officers in Wiltshire is set to launch later this month, as Wiltshire Police opens police officer recruitment for the first time in two years.

The Force is encouraging people to register their interest on its website now, ahead of applications opening on Monday, September 23.

The campaign coincides with a Home Office national advertising campaign launching today to recruit 20,000 more police officers over the next three years, urging people to join the police and ‘Be a force for all’.

The number of officers allocated to each police force is still to be confirmed, but Wiltshire Police has welcomed the announcements.

Deputy Chief Constable Paul Mills said: “This is excellent news for policing and the local community,”

“We are gearing up for a significant uplift in police officer numbers in the coming years, with more than 100 students already planned to start police officer training in Wiltshire over the next 12 months.

Additional Government funding will enable us to recruit, train and deploy even more officers to tackle crime and the issues that are really important to our communities.”

The Force has opened an online Talent Bank at wiltshire.police.uk for applicants to pre-register their interest in becoming a police officer, in the run up to recruitment opening on September 23.

The campaign will run until 13 October and successful applicants start training in June 2020.

GCSEs in Maths and English and at least one A Level or equivalent are needed to apply - you do not need a degree to apply to become a police officer.

From next year, Wiltshire Police will offer a three-year police degree apprenticeship and a two-year programme for those who already hold a degree, working in partnership with the University of South Wales.

A third entry route offers a traditional three-year policing degree course at university.

Wiltshire and Swindon’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Angus Macpherson, said: "Boosting police officer numbers can only be a good thing for our Force.

"We need to attract, train and retain talented individuals who put people first and continue to give the public an excellent policing service, keeping people safe and working with local communities to reduce harm and the risk of crime. This is a priority for me.

"Anyone considering a job with Wiltshire Police will be joining a Force with a strong ethos of equality and inclusion, not only in the services it provides, but also within the organisation, to ensure it effectively engages with the public."

For more information on the role of a police officer, the new training routes and entry requirements, go to wiltshire.police.uk/Officers

The Home Office has also set up a new website joiningthepolice.co.uk/ to provide potential recruits with more information and direct them to local police forces.