Eligibility Requirements2020-12-02T13:45:12+00:00

Check your eligibility

Whilst we welcome applications from people of all backgrounds, there are some eligibility conditions that all applicants need to meet. Please check the below to ensure you meet our requirements for both the role of police constable and our different entry routes before you register your details.

Age

You must be aged 18 years or over to apply.

There is no upper age limit for applying to the police service. However, please bear in mind the normal retirement age for police officers is 60 years and new recruits are required to undertake a probationary period of three years.

Business Interests

You must declare any other employment or business interests you intend to maintain.

The purpose of this is to ensure business interests and additional occupations do not conflict with the work of the police, undermine public confidence or adversely affect the reputation of the police officer or Northumbria Police.

Driving

You must have a full driving licence, but we do make accommodations for applicants who don’t drive due to a disability. If you have any concerns around your application then please feel free to contact us to discuss.

Eyesight Requirements

The eyesight standards you need to meet with spectacles or contact lenses can be found here.

Cautions and Convictions

Cautions or convictions will not necessarily preclude you from appointment. It will depend on the nature and the circumstances of the offence.

Applicants who fail to declare a relevant matter, including any conviction, caution and judicial or other formal disposal, whether spent or not, will be rejected on the grounds of integrity.

It is not appropriate to identify a prescriptive list of convictions and cautions that should lead to rejection of an application. Each case will be considered on its own individual merits in relation to the role being undertaken within our standard vetting procedures.

Applications for a position as a Police Officer where that you may be in the evidential chain will be rejected in all cases where:

  • offences were committed as an adult or juvenile which resulted in a prison sentence (including custodial, suspended or deferred sentence and sentences served at a young offenders’ institution or community home);
  • OR
  • the applicant is a registered sex offender or is subject to a registration requirement in respect of any other conviction.

For all other convictions or cautions there is a rebuttable presumption that applications should be rejected; in particular, the following may result in rejection

  • offences where vulnerable people were targeted
  • offences motivated by hate or discrimination
  • offences of domestic abuse

Please use this link to take you to further information and the documentation to support the professional standards for vetting issued by the College of Policing.

Dress and Appearance

You will need to look smart and clean at all times when representing the Force on any duty. Religious or cultural clothing can be worn, provided it is suitable for the purpose.

Headwear – If you wear a turban or an Imama Shareef a force badge must be on display. Anyone wearing a hijab or skullcap must wear their headwear over it when on foot patrol.

Facial hair – operational officers should not have a long beard, because of health and safety risks; although we can make exceptions for religious reasons.

Jewellery – Religious requirements to wear jewellery are judged on their own merit. They are only allowed if not a significant health and safety risk and unobtrusive.

Financial Position

Police officers are in a privileged position with regard to access of information and could be considered potentially vulnerable to corruption. Most applicants have debts, such as mortgages, undischarged student or other loans, and credit/store card debts. Whilst this is generally accepted, applicants to the police service should not be under pressure from undischarged debts or liabilities and should be able to manage loans and debts sensibly. The emphasis is on sensible management of debt.

If you have a discharged County Court Judgement you may be considered. However we will not accept an application if you have an existing County Court Judgement outstanding against you.

If you have been registered as bankrupt and your bankruptcy debts have been discharged, you will be considered after three years from discharge of the debt. However, we will not accept you if you have been registered bankrupt and your bankruptcy debts have not been discharged.

If you are the subject of a current Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA), you will not be considered.

Health and Fitness

Whilst our health and fitness requirements are not nearly as demanding as is often assumed, you will need to be able to cope with the physical and mental demands of the job. Certain medical conditions may prevent this.

As part of the recruitment process you will be required to pass our medical checks and fitness test, including a BMI analysis. Getting to the level of health and fitness you need is 100% achievable with some determination and practice.

Make sure you read through the Home Office Medical Standards to understand if you will be eligible to apply.

Nationality and Residency

You must be a citizen of the United Kingdom/Commonwealth or a citizen of a member state of the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA). If you are not, then you must have the status of indefinite leave to remain in the United Kingdom without restriction.
You must have been continually resident in the UK for the three year period immediately before an application is made. This is to satisfy the requirement to vet all applicants in an equitable manner.

Membership of BNP and similar groups

The Police Service has a duty to promote equality. We have a policy to prevent officers and staff from becoming members of the BNP, organisations or groups whose aims, objectives or pronouncements may contradict the duty to promote equality. Therefore, if you are a member of BNP, Combat 18, National Front or similar parties, you will not be accepted.

Qualifications and Experience

In addition to the general requirements to join as a Police Officer with Northumbria Police, applicants for the PCDA programme must have:

  • Level 2 qualifications in both English and Maths for example a GCSE or iGCSE at grade C (level 4) or above, Functional Skills Level 2, Key Skills Level 2 (Communication and / or Literacy) or Adult Numeracy / Literacy Plus

AND one of the following;

  • Level 3 qualifications where the grades total 120 UCAS points or higher. Your Tariff Points can be made up of a number of different types of qualifications. Please utilise the UCAS calculation tool to help you.

OR​

  • A minimum of 2 Level 3 qualifications PLUS a minimum of 3 years work experience that will support your progression into the Police Officer role. We will review work experience in line with our core force values and the National Police Officers competency and values framework.

In addition to the general requirements to join as an officer, applicants for the DHEP programme must:

  • Be degree holders in any subject area or be students within the final year of study for a degree.
  • Hold level 2 qualifications in both English and Maths. For example a GCSE or iGCSE at grade C (level 4) or above, Functional Skills Level 2, Key Skills Level 2 (Communication and / or Literacy) or Adult Numeracy / Literacy Plus

Fitness Test

The fitness test allows an assessment to be made of your endurance to ensure you are able to meet the demands of operational policing.

The test focuses upon aerobic capacity. You will carry out a shuttle run over a 15 metre area and run in time with a bleep. At the end of each level the time in between the bleeps is shortened and you therefore have to run faster to keep up with the pace. The recruit pass mark is level 5.4. This involves running for approximately 3 minutes 40 seconds. If you do not think you can achieve this level, you should ensure you start improving your fitness levels as soon as you can (please check with your doctor before making any big changes to your fitness regime).

As part of the PCDA programme you will be required to undertake Officer Safety Training and complete an additional fitness test at the start or your 2nd year and meet a standard of 6.3, to ensure that you are able to meet the demands of operational policing.

Tattoos

Tattoos do not prevent applicants from becoming a Police Officer; however tattoos on the face are not acceptable other than for religious or medical reasons. In addition, tattoos, whether visible or otherwise should not:

  • undermine the dignity and authority of the office of constable;
  • cause offence to members of the public or colleagues and/or invite provocation
  • indicate unacceptable attitudes towards any individual or section of the community
  • indicate alignment with a particular group which could give offence to members of the public or colleagues; and
  • be considered inflammatory, rude, lewd, crude, racist, sexist, sectarian, homophobic, violent or intimidating.

Although tattoos will not prohibit applicants from joining Northumbria Police (subject to the above), it is recommended they are covered when at work to maintain a professional image. The dress and appearance protocol outlines that officers should wear appropriate work wear which covers tattoos as far as possible when at work, which will be issued accordingly.

If your tattoo is determined as not acceptable, your application will not be progressed.

Substance Misuse

This contradicts everything the role of a police officer stands for – if you are currently using any illegal drugs, this will rule you out of the recruitment process automatically.

You will be tested for substance misuse during the recruitment medical process. You may also be subject to substance misuse testing at any stage during your career with us.

Age

You must be aged 18 years or over to apply.

There is no upper age limit for applying to the police service. However, please bear in mind the normal retirement age for police officers is 60 years and new recruits are required to undertake a probationary period of three years.

Business Interests

You must declare any other employment or business interests you intend to maintain.

The purpose of this is to ensure business interests and additional occupations do not conflict with the work of the police, undermine public confidence or adversely affect the reputation of you as an officer or Northumbria Police.

Cautions and Convictions

Cautions or convictions will not necessarily preclude you from appointment. It will depend on the nature and the circumstances of the offence.

Applicants who fail to declare a relevant matter, including any conviction, caution and judicial or other formal disposal, whether spent or not, will be rejected on the grounds of integrity.

It is not appropriate to identify a prescriptive list of convictions and cautions that should lead to rejection of an application. Each case will be considered on its own individual merits in relation to the role being undertaken within our standard vetting procedures.

Applications for a position as a police officer where that member of staff may be in the evidential chain are rejected in all cases where:

  • offences were committed as an adult or juvenile which resulted in a prison sentence (including custodial, suspended or deferred sentence and sentences served at a young offenders’ institution or community home);

OR

  • the applicant is a registered sex offender or is subject to a registration requirement in respect of any other conviction.

For all other convictions or cautions there is a rebuttable presumption that applications should be rejected; in particular, the following may result in rejection:

  • offences where vulnerable people were targeted
  • offences motivated by hate or discrimination
  • offences of domestic abuse

Please use this link to take you to further information on the professional standards for vetting issued by the College of Policing.

Dress and Appearance

You will need to look smart and clean at all times when representing the Force on duty. Religious or cultural clothing can be worn, provided it is suitable for the purpose.

Headwear – If you wear a turban or an Imama Shareef a force badge must be on display. Anyone wearing a hijab or skullcap must wear their headwear over it when on foot patrol.

Facial hair – operational officers should not have a long beard, because of health and safety risks; although we can make exceptions for religious reasons.

Jewellery – religious requirements to wear jewellery are judged on their own merit. They are only allowed if not a significant health and safety risk and unobtrusive.

Driving

You must have a full driving licence, but we do make accommodations for applicants who don’t drive due to a disability. If you have any concerns around your application then please feel free to contact us.

Eyesight Requirements

The eyesight standards you need to meet with spectacles or contact lenses can be found here.

Financial Position

Police officers are in a privileged position with regard to access of information and could be considered potentially vulnerable to corruption. Most applicants have debts, such as mortgages, undischarged student or other loans, and credit/store card debts. Whilst this is generally accepted, applicants to the police service should not be under pressure from undischarged debts or liabilities and should be able to manage loans and debts sensibly. The emphasis is on sensible management of debt.

If you have a discharged County Court Judgement you may be considered. However we will not accept an application if you have an existing County Court Judgement outstanding against you.

If you have been registered as bankrupt and your bankruptcy debts have been discharged, you will be considered after three years from discharge of the debt. However, we will not accept you if you have been registered bankrupt and your bankruptcy debts have not been discharged.

If you are the subject of a current Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA), you will not be considered.

Health and Fitness

Whilst our health and fitness requirements are not nearly as demanding as is often assumed, you will need to be able to cope with the physical and mental demands of the job. Certain medical conditions may prevent this.

As part of the recruitment process you will be required to pass our medical checks and fitness test, including a BMI analysis. Getting to the level of health and fitness you need is 100% achievable with some determination and practice.

Make sure you read through the Home Office Medical Standards to understand if you will be eligible to apply.

Fitness Test

The fitness test allows an assessment to be made of your endurance to ensure you are able to meet the demands of operational policing.

The test focuses upon aerobic capacity. You will carry out a shuttle run over a 15 metre area and run in time with a bleep. At the end of each level the time in between the bleeps is shortened and you therefore have to run faster to keep up with the pace. The recruit pass mark is level 5.4. This involves running for approximately 3 minutes 40 seconds. If you do not think you can achieve this level, you should ensure you start improving your fitness levels as soon as you can (please check with your doctor before making any big changes to your fitness regime).

As part of the PCDA programme you will be required to undertake Officer Safety Training and complete an additional fitness test at the start or your 2nd year and meet a standard of 6.3, to ensure that you are able to meet the demands of operational policing.

Membership of BNP and similar groups

The police service has a duty to promote equality. We have a policy to prevent officers and staff from becoming members of the BNP, or organisations or groups whose aims may contradict the duty to promote equality. Therefore, if you are a member of BNP, Combat 18, National Front or similar parties, you will not be accepted.

Nationality and Residency

You must be a citizen of the United Kingdom/Commonwealth or a citizen of a member state of the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA). If you are not, then you must have the status of indefinite leave to remain in the United Kingdom without restriction.

You must have been continually resident in the UK for the three year period immediately before an application is made. This is to satisfy the requirement to vet all applicants in an equitable manner.

Qualifications and Experience

In addition to the general requirements to join as a police officer, applicants for the PCDA programme must have:

  • Level 2 qualifications in both English and Maths, for example a GCSE or iGCSE at grade C (level 4) or above, Functional Skills Level 2, Key Skills Level 2 (Communication and / or Literacy) or Adult Numeracy / Literacy Plus

AND one of the following;

  • Level 3 qualifications where the grades total 120 UCAS points or higher. Your Tariff Points can be made up of a number of different types of qualifications. Please utilise the UCAS calculation tool to help you.

OR​

  • A minimum of 2 Level 3 qualifications PLUS a minimum of 3 years work experience that will support your progression into the Police Officer role. We will review work experience in line with our core force values and the National Police Officers competency and values framework.

In addition to the general requirements to join as an officer, applicants for the DHEP programme must:

  • Be degree holders in any subject area or be students within the final year of study for a degree.
  • Hold level 2 qualifications in both English and Maths. For example a GCSE or iGCSE at grade C (level 4) or above, Functional Skills Level 2, Key Skills Level 2 (Communication and / or Literacy) or Adult Numeracy / Literacy Plus

Substance Misuse

This contradicts everything the role of a police officer stands for – if you are currently using any illegal drugs, this will rule you out of the recruitment process automatically.

You will be tested for substance misuse during the recruitment medical process. You may also be subject to substance misuse testing at any stage during your career with us.

Tattoos

Tattoos do not prevent you from becoming a police officer; however tattoos on the face are not acceptable other than for religious or medical reasons. In addition, tattoos, whether visible or otherwise should not:

  • undermine the dignity and authority of the office of constable;
  • cause offence to members of the public or colleagues and/or invite provocation
  • indicate unacceptable attitudes towards any individual or section of the community
  • indicate alignment with a particular group which could give offence to members of the public or colleagues; and
  • be considered inflammatory, rude, lewd, crude, racist, sexist, sectarian, homophobic, violent or intimidating.

Although tattoos will not prohibit applicants from joining Northumbria Police (subject to the above), it is recommended they are covered when at work to maintain a professional image. The dress and appearance protocol outlines that officers should wear appropriate work wear which covers tattoos as far as possible when at work, which will be issued accordingly.

If your tattoo is determined as not acceptable, your application will not be progressed.