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Bridgebury House, Woburn Road, Kempston, Bedfordshire, MK43 9AX

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His Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) Reports and Publications



The most recent HMICFRS PEEL inspection report for Bedfordshire Police Force can be found here.

The Specified Information Order requires PCCs to publish the most recent HMICFRS force-level report on the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy of the police force. It also requires PCCs to publish the summary assessment of the performance of the police force.

Annual report on the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy of the police force

Since 2018, HMICFRS has issued a single report to forces, PCCs and the public, with gradings for force performance in those areas inspected. These integrated PEEL inspection reports are published on the HMICFRS website here.

In 2020/21, HMICFRS published a new police inspection programme and framework. If you would like to read more, please click here.

As part of this, they have moved to a two-year inspection and reporting cycle and will publish new PEEL force performance reports between late summer 2021 and end March 2023.

The order requires that PCCs publish the PEEL report for their force on their website.


The 2021/22 PEEL report for Bedfordshire Police is available here.

The inspection assessed how good Bedfordshire Police is in nine areas of policing and made graded judgments in eight of these nine as follows. HMICFRS also inspected how effective a service Bedfordshire Police gives to victims of crime. HMICFRS  do not make a graded judgment in this overall area.

HMICFRS Inspection for Bedfordshire Police 2022 Judgements Chart


The 2018/19 Bedfordshire Police Force PEEL report is available here. 

HMICFRS Bedfordshire Reports and Responses

The reports relating to Bedfordshire can be found below, together with the relevant responses.

PEEL 2021/22 – An inspection of Bedfordshire Police

Published on: 13 April 2022

PEEL is HMICFRS’s assessment of police forces in England and Wales. PEEL stands for police effectiveness, efficiency, and legitimacy.

This report sets out the findings for Bedfordshire Police.


Expectations for police custody: for consultation

Published on: 23 December 2021

HM Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services and HM Inspectorate of Prisons are reviewing and updating their Expectations for police custody.

We are consulting across the sector to obtain the views of our stakeholders on the refreshed Expectations and to inform any further amendments or changes that might be needed.

The Expectations were last updated in 2018.

This version of the Expectations addresses changes to the PACE Codes of Guidance – in particular PACE Code C for the detention, treatment and questioning of persons detained – and any changes made by College of Policing Authorised Professional Practice (APP) on Detention and Custody.

The proposed Expectations also reflect concerns raised by those with an interest in police custody, or where recommendations have been made to improve standards. We remain focused in our Expectations on achieving better outcomes for detainees.

The main changes reflect:

  • Dame Angiolini’s independent review of deaths and serious incidents in police custody – in particular, recommendations about the care of detainees under the influence of alcohol, drugs and/or substances;
  • concerns raised by the Independent Custody Visitors Association (ICVA) about the needs of menstruating women and girls in police custody (which led to changes to the PACE code C); and
  • revisions to reflect changes in professional health care requirements and practices.

We have also taken the opportunity to clarify wording, remove duplication, and re-order some of the sections and indicators.


Police response to violence against women and girls – Final inspection report

Published on: 17 September 2021


In March 2021, the Home Secretary commissioned Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) to inspect the effectiveness of police engagement with women and girls.

This report sets out findings from our inspection of how effectively the police respond to violence against women and girls (VAWG (PDF document)) offences. These are violent and high-harm crimes that disproportionally affect women and girls, such as domestic abuse, sexual violence, stalking and female genital mutilation.

Recommendations of our July 2021 interim report

In July 2021, we published an interim report on our initial findings and recommendations. This was to inform work on the Government’s revised tackling VAWG strategy.

The interim report was based mainly on our review of evidence from our previous inspections and from our consultations with experts


A duty to protect: Police use of protective measures in cases involving violence against women and girls

Published on: 24 August 2021

On 19 March 2019, the Centre for Women’s Justice made a super-complaint to HMICFRS. 

This super-complaint is about the police’s alleged failure to use protective measures to safeguard women and girls.  It sets out concerns about four tools the police can use/are involved in: 

  • Pre-charge bail 
  • Non-Molestation Orders 
  • Domestic Violence Protection Notices and Orders 
  • Restraining Orders 

The CWJ is concerned the police aren’t using these tools enough and in the right way. 

What is a super-complaint? 

A super-complaint is a complaint that “a feature, or combination of features, of policing in England and Wales by one or more than one police force is, or appears to be, harming the interests of the public” (section 29A, Police Reform Act 2002). 

The system aims to examine problems of local, regional or national significance that may not be addressed by existing complaints systems. The process for making and considering a super-complaint is outlined in the Police Super-complaints Regulations 2018. 

Super-complaints provide a voice for designated bodies to raise concerns on behalf of the public. They can include patterns or trends in policing that are, or appear to be, harming the interests of the public. 

College of Policing and the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) are responsible for assessing, investigating and reporting on police super-complaints. We have collaborated on the investigation and on drawing conclusions. 


Inspection into how effectively the police engage with women and girls

Published on: 7 July 2021

On 26 March 2021, the Home Secretary commissioned HMICFRS to inspect how the police work with female victims, offenders and witnesses. The report was published in two sections. We published our interim report in July 2021. We published our final report in September 2021.

Interim report: Inspection into how effectively the police engage with women and girls

The interim report sets out findings and recommendations from one part of this inspection, which focuses on how effectively the police respond to violence against women and girls (VAWG) offences. These are violent and high-harm crimes that disproportionally affect women and girls, such as domestic abuse, sexual violence, stalking, and female genital mutilation (FGM).

We published these interim findings before our main inspection report, so our evidence could inform the Government’s violence against women and girls strategy, which was published in July 2021.

HMI Zoë Billingham made three recommendations in this report:

  1. There should be an immediate and unequivocal commitment that the response to VAWG offences is an absolute priority for government, policing, the criminal justice system, and public sector partnerships. This needs to be supported at a minimum by a relentless focus on these crimes; mandated and clear responsibilities; and sufficient funding so that all partner agencies can work effectively as part of a whole-system approach to reduce and prevent the harms these offences are causing.
  2. The relentless pursuit and disruption of adult perpetrators should be a national priority for the police, and their capability and capacity to do this should be enhanced.
  3. Structures and funding should be put in place to make sure victims receive tailored and consistent support.

This final report sets out findings and recommendations on how effectively the police respond to VAWG offences. It draws on the findings of new inspection activity, and on our work to gather the views of female victims and survivors themselves.

HMI Zoë Billingham made two further recommendations in this final report:

  1. All chief constables should immediately review and ensure that there are consistently high standards in their forces’ responses to violence against women and girls and should be supported in doing so by national standards and data.
  2. There should be an immediate review of use of outcomes 15 and 16 in violence against women and girls offences.

A review of ‘Fraud: Time to choose’

Published on: 5 August 2021

In 2018, the Home Secretary commissioned HMICFRS to carry out a thematic inspection of fraud.

We conducted our inspection between March and July 2018. In April 2019, we published Fraud: Time to choose – An inspection of the police response to fraud. In that report, we made 16 recommendations and identified 5 areas for improvement (AFIs).

We have revisited our previous inspection to see how the police service has responded to the recommendations and AFIs we made in that report. This report presents our findings on the progress that has been made.


Policing inspection programme and framework 2021/22

Published on: 21 July 2021

This document is HMICFRS’s inspection programme and framework for policing for 2021/22.

The types of inspections we carry out are:

  • PEEL assessments
  • National thematic inspections
  • Commissions from the Home Secretary and local policing bodies
  • Inspection of national agencies and other non-Home Office forces
  • Joint inspections
  • State of Policing report

We have amended our organisational strategy. This inspection programme and framework complies with our statutory obligations and is designed to facilitate the achievement of our four strategic objectives.

We will:

  • focus on those areas that make the most significant difference to the public and those areas that have the greatest influence on improving public safety;
  • adopt a collaborative and more targeted ‘smarter systems’ approach to the work of the inspectorate and our work across the inspected sectors and the wider criminal justice system;
  • capitalise on our independent insight and learning, maximising the benefits of our unique insights across the whole of our inspected sectors; and
  • be more proactive in responding to major changes, using our insight to identify intractable problems and try to find evidence as to how they could be resolved.

State of Policing: The Annual Assessment of Policing in England and Wales 2020

Published on: 21 July 2021

This is Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Constabulary’s report to the Secretary of State under section 54(4A) of the Police Act 1996. It contains his assessment of the effectiveness and  efficiency of policing in England and Wales based on the inspections we carried out between March 2020 and March 2021.


Review of policing domestic abuse during the pandemic – 2021

Published on: 23 June 2021

The United Kingdom entered the first national lockdown on 23 March 2020. Most of us were instructed to stay at home. This meant many victims of domestic abuse couldn’t distance themselves from their abuser, safely contact the police for help or get support from family and friends. Forces started to work differently, recognising that the absence of a call to the police doesn’t imply absence of abuse and harm. Many forces adopted innovative new practices to check on the safety of victims of domestic abuse, finding new ways to ‘reach in’ to them rather than waiting for victims to ‘reach out’.

This review expands on the findings in our recent policing COVID-19 report, highlighting good practice and innovation. We have also made three recommendations aimed at ensuring forces continue to respond to the challenges of policing domestic abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

It is the fifth in a series of thematic domestic abuse publications since our first report in March 2014, Everyone’s business: Improving the police response to domestic abuse. This review looks at how the police responded to the unique challenges the COVID-19 pandemic placed on preventing and responding to domestic abuse.


Policing in the pandemic – The police response to the coronavirus pandemic during 2020

Published on: 20 April 2021

In July, we announced our intention to inspect the police response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our inspection took a snapshot of policing and assessed what happened from March to November 2020.

We consulted many interested parties about the aspects of policing that our inspection should cover.

Our inspection focused on:

  • preparation for the pandemic;
  • overall leadership;
  • working with other organisations;
  • policing – workforce wellbeing, protecting people who are vulnerable, requests for service, investigating crime, enforcing coronavirus legislation (the Four Es approach – engage, explain, encourage, enforce); and
  • arrangements for keeping people in custody.

Custody services in a COVID-19 environment

Published on: 20 April 2021

In March 2020, we suspended all inspection work so that police forces, and fire and rescue services could focus on responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our inspection took a snapshot of policing during the pandemic and looked at what happened from March to November 2020.

Our inspection assessed how policing:

  • understood and prepared for the potential and actual impact of the pandemic;
  • responded initially, and continues to respond, to the pandemic; and
  • is evaluating its response to the pandemic, establishing what is and is not working and using this to shape how the police service operates.

Our report Policing in the pandemic: The police response to the COVID-19 pandemic was published in April 2021.

This report supplements the wider inspection with more detailed findings on how custody services operated in a COVID-19 environment. It aims to:

  • increase the police service’s national and local understanding of how custody services operate in a COVID-19 environment;
  • show how services have been/are affected and how police forces are responding; and
  • establish what improvements forces and the wider Criminal Justice System can make.
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