Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey, Lisa Townsend, has welcomed news that Surrey Police has exceeded its officer uplift target, according to official data released by the Home Office.
As part of the national 20,000 uplift target, Surrey Police was granted 259 additional officers. But new data shows the force has recruited 395 officers since March 2019, 136 above target.
This brings the number of officers in Surrey Police to 2,325, which Mrs Townsend says is the most the force has ever employed. In March 2010, Surrey Police had 1,835 police officers, and in 2019, before Operation Uplift began, the county had 1,930 officers.
A number of the extra 136 officers have been funded through the 5.07 per cent increase to the force’s council tax precept in April.
New officers have joined the force in 44 intakes since April 2019 and will be based across the county.
A total of 46.4 per cent of Surrey’s new officers are female, and ten per cent come from a black or ethnic minority background.
Mrs Townsend said: “I am so pleased that we can now confirm an additional 395 officers in Surrey, an increase of 490 since 2010.
“Hitting this target was no mean feat, and to have exceeded it is brilliant news for Surrey residents.
“A much larger number of new officers had to be recruited since 2019 to grow the force as part of Operation Uplift while also back- filling positions where officers have retired or left the force.
“I know from speaking with residents across Surrey over the past two years that this will be welcome news across our county.
“Many of these additional officers will be joining local teams, and others will help strengthen some of our county-wide teams, many of whom deal with the most challenging and serious crimes, including fraud and online harms.
“I have been delighted to meet new intakes of officers since I became commissioner, and to have seen many of them out with local teams following completion of their training.
“My thanks go to all the teams within Surrey Police who have been involved in recruiting and growing our force, and to all officers and staff across the force, new and experienced, for their relentless effort and determination to keep our county safe.”
In a column for the Herald, published here, chair of the Farnham Labour Group John Gaskell welcomed Surrey Police exceeding its recruitment target, but queried how many of the new officers will be seen policing in towns and villages across the county.