Agenda and minutes

Wiltshire Police and Crime Panel - Thursday 10 December 2020 10.00 am

Venue: On-Line Meeting

Contact: Kevin Fielding  Democratic Services Officer


No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies were received from Anna Richardson


Minutes and matters arising

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 3 September 2020

Supporting documents:




·         The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 3 September 2020 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman


Declarations of interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interests or dispensations granted by the Standards Committee.


There were no declarations of interest


Chairman's Announcements


That Cllr Brian Mathew – Wiltshire Council had replaced Cllr Peter Hutton – Wiltshire Council as a panel member. Cllr Hutton was thanked by the Chairman for his attendance and contribution to the panel


Public Participation

The Panel welcomes contributions from members of the public.




If you wish to make a statement at this meeting on any item on this agenda, please register to do so at least 10 minutes prior to the meeting. Speakers are permitted to speak for up to 3 minutes on any agenda item. Please contact the officer named on the first page of the agenda for any further clarification.




Members of the public are able to ask questions in relation to the responsibilities and functions of the Panel at each meeting. Those wishing to ask questions are required to give notice of any such questions in writing to the Head of Democratic Services at Wiltshire Council no later than 5.00 pm on Friday 4 December 2020. Please contact the officer named on the first page of the agenda for further advice. Questions may be asked without notice if the Chairman decides that the matter is urgent.



There was no public participation


Chief Constable update

Kier Pritchard – Chief Constable, Wiltshire Police


A 10 minute presentation with questions on key operational challenges over last 12 months


Kier Pritchard – Chief Constable, Wiltshire Police gave a presentation on the key operational challenges over last 12 months for Wiltshire Police.


A copy of the presentation was circulated to the PCP members


Points raised by the members included:


·         Moral – that there was low moral across all police forces, Wiltshire Police were faring better than most forces. Wiltshire Police were facing challenges including pay freezes, lack of numbers, as well as permanent major incidents since 2018. It was felt that a lot was expected from our officers, but a good level good level of support for police mental health was being provided.


·         Tasers – that a solid roll out of taser training was being carried out.


·         Virtual crime scene reporting – what the feedback from both officers and residents had been pretty positive. Feedback, received indicated that Virtual crime scene reporting had been a useful experience, but Wiltshire Police were surprised by the low uptake.

That technology had moved quickly during the pandemic, and that it  would be useful to offer a blended approach going forward.


·         That the level of sickness and availability of police resources to provide a viable presence with absentees due to psychological raised concerns. Levels of sickness had improved during the pandemic.

           That Wiltshire Police were in a stronger position than may forces.


·         On the whole it was felt that Wiltshire Police had done a good job of policing during the pandemic.


The Chairman thanked the Chief Constable and his staff for their hard work during the pandemic.


Quarterly data (Q2)- Risk / Performance / Finance / Complaints

Supporting documents:


The Commissioner presented his report for data reported for Quarter 2 -2020/2021 Performance Overview which was contained in the agenda pack.


Points made included:


·         That the volume of Crime for Wiltshire in terms of national position remained low


·         On average, for Wiltshire 54.56 recorded crimes per 1000 population, was significantly below the Most Similar Group average of 68.97


·         An average reported national decrease was 6.9%; South West Region average reduction of 5.5%; MSG average reduction of 5.6%. Just five forces nationally reported an increase within the same time period


·         That Wiltshire Police reported a 10.1% reduction in volume of crime for the 12 months to Sep-20 compared to the previous 12 months


·         That all crime groups were being reported within the volumes of what was considered to within the bounds of statistically normal


·         That Wiltshire’s crime commission was demonstrating a long term decreasing trend with no recent monthly exceptions since the first government lockdown March-2020


·         That Crime recording compliance for Sept-20 was 93.9% for quarter 2 2020/2021 and remained consistently high


·         That the Positive Outcome rate had returned to statistically normal levels at 16.7% for the rolling 12 months to Sep-20


Priority 1


Points made included:


Recording compliance issues – that Wiltshire Police were confident that the figures given were accurate.


Hate Crime – that Independent Assessment – how and why would be included as part of the Performance Overview data under Priority one at future meetings.


Speed enforcement – that auto speed enforcement was an excellent way to generate large amounts of data.  That this would be beneficial to community SpeedWatch groups. That a more detailed report would be beneficial and the experiences of other forces that are using them. Note: A report on road safety work in Wiltshire and Swindon was scheduled for the March 2021 meeting.


Special Constables – It was felt that there appeared to be regular pauses in recruitment, with many then becoming regular officers or getting posted into community policing teams.


Call answering rates – That Wiltshire Police should not use the pandemic as an excuse for falling statistics for the answering rate. The importance of not un-doing the good work that had been carried out over the last two years or so.


Priority 2 – no comments


Priority 3


Domestic Abuse – IQuanta statistical information, Wiltshire Police were confident with accuracy of the data


Domestic Abuse - Wiltshire Police scrutiny panels – how many and what do they cover.  Note it was agreed that Wiltshire Police OPCC would put together a list of all its scrutiny panels and circulate to the Panel members.


Priority 4


Complaints – That most complaints relate to single officers.


Psychological absences – the importance of detailed checks on possible applicants as to how they may fare under stress as a Police officer.



Risk register


The Panel noted the Risk register.



Community Policing Model


Chris McMullin outlined the report in the agenda pack that provided a summary of the performance measures for the PCC and Police and Crime panel  ...  view the full minutes text for item 105.


Operation Uplift progress

Supporting documents:


Chris McMullin outlined the report which provided an update on the progress of Operation Uplift.


Points made included:


·         That the Force remained on track to deliver the requirements of Uplift and increase the number of officers in Wiltshire Police. Plans were in place to achieve the first phase of the requirement by the end of 2020/21, and assessments by the national programme team placed Wiltshire in a good position.


·         As raised within the previous paper presented at the September Panel meeting, the national Uplift programme was an opportunity to increase resourcing and re-invest in policing further to a ten-year period of austerity and a fall in police officer numbers.


·         That the service had been asked to introduce 2,000 extra officers by March 2020, rising to 6,000 extra officers by March 2021.


·         That Wiltshire had been allocated 49 extra officers by March 2021. High level assumptions continued to be made on financial and workforce plans for beyond March 2021, which suggested a total number of 147 extra officers by March 2023. This was likely to change as more information became available about regional and national functions receiving a proportion of the officer uplift.


·         In order to achieve the uplift numbers, in addition to maintaining the numbers required due to officers leaving the organisation, Wiltshire would be required to recruit approximately over 400 officers up to March 2023. It was estimated at this stage that one in eight applicants get through the process, resulting in needing approximately 3,200 applicants for police officer jobs in Wiltshire – this was a huge requirement.

The report was noted by the Panel


The Chairman thanked Chris McMullin for the report.


Key impacts of COVID on Wiltshire Police

Supporting documents:



At the request of the PCP chairman, Cllr Richard Britton, the report contained in the agenda pack provided a brief update on the organisational impact of COVID 19 on Wiltshire Police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) and victim services, since the previous Police and Crime Panel (PCP) on 3 September 2020.


It was felt that the Chief Constable had covered this item under his update presentation.


The Commissioner thanked Police staff for their hard work and cooperation during the pandemic.


The report was noted by the Panel.





Members Questions

Supporting documents:


The members questions document contained in the agenda pack was noted.


Cllr Jonathon Seed circulated photos re his question dated 17 September 2020, contained in the members questions document.


On Sunday 13 September, Wiltshire Police Officers failed to break up an illegal gathering in Trowbridge choosing instead to watch the 500 people, some 470 more than the legal limit for an outside gathering, and the non compliance with social distancing rules. The local police commander said that, “it would have been unsafe for Officers to break up the gathering” and “in line with the way we police large gatherings, Officers monitored the incident…”


It was agreed that the Commissioner would re-look at Cllr Seed’s question, photos of the event in question would again be submitted to the OPCC.


Future meeting dates

To note the future meeting dates below:


·         Thursday 7 January 2021


·         Thursday 4 February 2021


·         Thursday 18 March 2021




The future meeting dates were noted as:


·         Thursday 7 January 2021


·         Thursday 4 February 2021


·         Thursday 18 March 2021