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PCC delivers Bedfordshire Police's funding argument at the Home Affairs Select Committee
Bedfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Kathryn Holloway, was invited to the Home Affairs Select Committee last week (Tuesday 14 November) to give evidence on the financial pressures and demand Bedfordshire Police is facing.

The Committee, chaired by Labour MP Yvette Cooper, requested that the Commissioner along with fellow PCCs David Lloyd for Hertfordshire, Sue Mountstevens for Avon and Somerset and Paddy Tipping for Nottinghamshire give evidence to them.

“I have spent the last 18 months in this role raising the funding argument concerning Bedfordshire Police as loudly as possible in the corridors of power,” said Commissioner Holloway.

“It is my job to be the public’s voice on policing in this county and to speak truth to power. This is precisely what I tried to do on the day to drive home the reality of the Force’s overstretched position. We have 1,124 officers to serve a population of 644,000 with some of the most serious and complex crime challenges anywhere in Britain.

“Bedfordshire Police faces the third highest terror threat in the country, serious organised crime groups dealing drugs along so-called county lines and youth gangs increasing in scope and severity across the county as a whole,” added the PCC.

The hearing took place in the House of Commons between 9:30am and 10:30am and concluded with the Chair expressing her gratitude to the PCCs for giving their evidence. While the funding for Bedfordshire Police is yet to be announced, the Commissioner remains hopeful that the Government will acknowledge the pressures on the Force and that the funding review will be assessed comprehensively.

“I told the committee that I have submitted a report to the Policing Minister, Nick Hurd, fully evidencing the case for an extra £10 million per year to pay for an uplift of 300 officers on the front line and 80 specialist detectives just to bring us up to numbers which are comparable with forces facing similar serious and complex crime challenges. I am told that it will be early December before we know the outcome of the latest settlement on police funding, but I have received a response from the Home Affairs Select Committee thanking me for such powerful evidence,” said the Commissioner.