Circular: police officer remuneration and conditions

Home Office circular 006/2012



Home Office circular 006/2012

Police officer remuneration and conditions

  • Broad subject: Police service
  • Issue date: Wed Feb 01 00:00:00 GMT 2012
  • From:
    Crime and policing group, policing directorate, police productivity unit
  • Linked circulars:
    No linked circulars
  • Copies sent to:
    Chief executives of police authorities

  • Sub category: Police pay and conditions
  • Implementation date: Wed Feb 01 00:00:00 GMT 2012
  • For more info contact:

Ifeyinwa Okoye
0207 035 1846

  • Addressed to:
    Chief officers of England and Wales


This circular publishes the Home Secretary’s decision on the findings of the Police Arbitration Tribunal (PAT), the recommendations of the Police Negotiation Board (PNB) and the advice of the Police Advisory Board for England and Wales (PABEW) in relation to the Part 1 Report of the Independent Review of Police Officer and Staff Remuneration and Conditions, led by Tom Winsor.

In April 2011, the Home Secretary directed the Police Negotiating Board to consider and reach agreement on 27 recommendations in the Winsor Part 1 Report in respect of police officer pay and conditions. The Police Negotiating Board failed to reach agreement on a number of important matters and these were referred to the Police Arbitration Tribunal in July 2011. The PAT provided its findings on 9 January 2012. It accepted 10 of the 18 recommendations, modified five and made no award on three.

On 30 January 2012, the Home Secretary announced in a written ministerial statement that, following careful consideration, she accepted the PAT’s recommendations and was minded to implement them. The Home Secretary also announced that she had decided to accept the recommendations of the PNB on those recommendations that it had agreed in principle.

The Home Secretary is therefore minded to introduce the following changes to police officer remuneration and conditions:

Recommendation 2 - Introduction of an unsocial hours allowance

Officers from the rank of constable to chief inspector will receive an additional 10 per cent of their basic pay (which is non-pensionable) for hours worked between 8.00pm and 6.00am. To allow forces sufficient time to prepare for this change, the interim arrangement set out in the Winsor Part 1 Report will be implemented initially. This is that officers will receive a fixed allowance for working unsocial hours between 8.00pm and 6.00am. The chief officer should determine the average pay for each rank on the applicable local shift arrangement and pay this average amount as an interim fixed allowance. For a standard eight-hour alternating shift pattern, the fixed annual rate would be:

  • £1,200 for constables
  • £1,500 for sergeants
  • £1,900 for inspectors
  • £2,100 for chief inspectors

However, these rates may be altered by the chief officer where different shift arrangements apply.

Recommendation 5 - Changes to variable shift arrangements

This applies to the federated ranks. The chief officer will consult, rather than agree, with the local joint branch board and individual officers, on bringing into operation variable shift arrangements. The consultation period should last at least 30 days. The new variable shift arrangement should come into force at least 30 days after it is announced.

Recommendation 6 (as modified by the PAT)

The premium rate of time and one third for ‘casual overtime’ should be retained, with payment of travelling time for recalls between tours of duty. However, the minimum of 4 hours’ pay for recall between tours of duty will be abolished.

Recommendation 7

The rate of pay for working on a rostered rest day will no longer be at double time if less than five days’ notice is given. Pay will be at time and a half for working on a rostered rest day with fewer than 15 days’ notice.

Recommendation 8 - Changes to public holiday arrangements

Officers will be able to choose seven days in addition to 25 December, to treat as public holidays.

  • Officers must nominate their chosen seven days before 31 January for the next financial year. This means that officers must notify before 31 January 2013 their seven days in time for their nominations to apply for the financial year starting April 2013.

Recommendations 11, 12 and 13 (as modified by PAT)

Changes to the arrangements for officers serving away from their normal place of duty (including on ‘mutual aid’ in another force area):

  • these changes apply to those officers who are deployed away from their normal place of duty whether in or out of force
  • the existing arrangements set out in PNB circulars 86/15, 88/9 and 95/8 (often known as the ‘Hertfordshire agreement’) shall cease
  • officers will be paid for the hours they work, including where applicable overtime and the unsocial hours allowance, plus travelling time
  • a new ‘Away from home overnight’ allowance of £50 will be introduced and will be payable for every night on which an officer is ‘held in reserve’
  • an officer is ‘held in reserve’ if he or she is serving away from his or her normal place of duty and is required to stay in a particular, specified place rather than being allowed to return home
  • payment of a new hardship allowance of £30 per night if ‘proper accommodation’ is not provided
  • the definition of ‘proper accommodation’ is a single occupancy room with use of en suite bathroom facilities

Recommendation 20 (as modified by PAT)

  • Two-year suspension of incremental progression for officers below the top of their pay scale
  • However, the first three increments for officers on the constables’ scale will be exempted from this. This means that an officer could progress to point three of the constables’ pay scale during this two-year period but no further.

Recommendation 25

Two-year suspension of chief officers’ bonuses

Recommendation 27

Two-year suspension of superintendents’ and chief superintendents’ bonus scheme.

  • Bonuses will be suspended for two years from when the determinations come into force. However, a full bonus will still be payable if an officer’s PDR reporting year ends before the determinations come into force and the officer is eligible for one as a result of his or her PDR rating.
  • Officers will also receive a pro-rated bonus if their reporting year ends after the determinations come into force in 2012 and as a result of their PDR rating, would be eligible for a bonus. This will be calculated by multiplying the full bonus by N/12. N is the number of full months in the period beginning with the start of the officer’s reporting year and ending on the date when the determinations come into force.

Recommendation 29 (as modified by PAT)

The competence-related threshold payments scheme should be retained for those officers already in receipt of CRTP, but there should be a two-year freeze on new applications.

Recommendation 31

Chief officers should be able to recognise whole teams with a team recognition award payment of £50 to £100 each for outstandingly demanding, unpleasant or important work, or outstanding work for the public.

Recommendation 33 - Abolition of special priority payments

  • Special priority payments (SPPs) paid on a monthly basis will not be paid once the changes come into force
  • Where SPPs are paid yearly and forces have determined that an officer will receive a lump sum payment in December 2012, the payment will be pro-rated to reflect the officer’s service in the qualifying post from 1 January 2012 until the date the changes come into force.

Recommendation 37

Police authorities should be required to pay all reasonable costs arising from the sale and purchase of a chief officer’s house, and should pay all tax liabilities arising from any relocation packages, so that, for the chief officer concerned, there is no personal financial disadvantage.

Recommendation 38

Police authorities should publish details of all benefits for chief officers and their values in their annual reports, itemised by officer.

Recommendation 39

Chief officers should provide receipts for all expenses, and information as to expenses above £50 paid to chief officers should be published quarterly on the police authority’s website.

Recommendation 43

The replacement allowance is retained. However, there will be no increase in the amount received following a change in personal circumstances such as promotion. The existing framework where the amount an officer receives is reduced when he or she lives with another officer also receiving the allowance will be retained.

Recommendation 46

The link between motor vehicle allowance for police officers and that for local authorities should be re-established.

Recommendation 48

Officers’ maternity entitlement should increase from 13 weeks at full pay to 18 weeks at full pay, with officers having the option, with the agreement of their chief officer, to spread the final five weeks of maternity pay over 10 weeks at reduced rate.

Recommendation 55

The Police Pension regulations should be amended to allow chief officers to make a choice in relation to the time at which their pension benefits crystallise.

Recommendation 57

The criteria for the use of powers in Regulation A19 should be amended, with service-critical skills and performance being explicit considerations.

Recommendation 58

As quickly as possible, police forces should be provided with the ability to offer voluntary exit terms to police officers, substantially on the terms contained in the Civil Service Compensation Scheme 2010.

Recommendation 59

Officers who have been working on a part-time basis and wish to return to working full-time will now, on giving written notice of their return to work full-time, be appointed by the Police Authority within two months if there is a suitable vacancy.  In any case, the officer will be appointed to a full-time post within four months of the written notice being received.


The process to amend the relevant sections of the Police Regulations 2003 and determinations to take forward these recommendations will begin immediately. This will include consultation with the Police Negotiating Board.

The PAT recommended that these changes be implemented as soon as is practical and suggested that an implementation date of 1 April 2012 should be taken forward if possible. It is our intention to work to this timetable, where possible.

However, the implementation date for voluntary exit provisions, once they have been finalised, may be after April 2012.  Further details of the implementation date for each recommendation will be provided in due course.

Police Advisory Board for England and Wales

In April 2011, The Home Secretary also directed the Police Advisory Board for England and Wales (PABEW) to consider and reach agreement on four Winsor Part 1 recommendations: recommendations 14, 15, 40 and 54. 

The PABEW provided advice to the Home Secretary on these on 26 July 2011. The Home Secretary has considered this and has accepted the board’s advice on recommendation 40 (revising the section on accommodation in the ‘Guide to conditions of service for police officers seconded to central services’) and the draft wording PABEW produced. The Home Secretary has also asked the PABEW to consider further recommendations 14 and 15 (on business interests) and 54 on unsatisfactory performance and attendance procedures.