Special Constabulary2024-01-12T15:53:37+00:00

Volunteer Special Constable

Do something different after your day job. Join us as a volunteer police officer.

Sign up to an information event

Shake up your routine, learn new skills and make a difference in your local community.

What is a Special Constable?

Special Constables are volunteer, warranted Police Officers who play a key role in helping us to keep people safe and to fight crime.

Our 100+ Northumbria Specials have the same uniform and powers as their regular Officer colleagues and deal with the same types of incidents. Our invaluable volunteers help to build links between policing and the communities in which they live, work and serve and form an integral part of British policing.

Applications to join us as a Special Constable are open year-round and we are always looking for individuals to join us as a volunteer at TeamNP. Training courses are currently scheduled for August 2024.

Uniformed volunteer special constabulary

Shake up your routine, learn new skills and make a difference in your local community.

Special Constables are volunteer, warranted Police Officers who play a key role in helping us to keep people safe and to fight crime.

Our 100+ Northumbria Specials have the same uniform and powers as their regular Officer colleagues and deal with the same types of incidents. Our invaluable volunteers help to build links between policing and the communities in which they live, work and serve and form an integral part of British policing.

Applications to join us as a Special Constable are open year-round and we are always looking for individuals to join us as a volunteer at TeamNP. Training courses are currently scheduled for January 2024.

What could I be doing on an average shift as a Special Constable?

Volunteering as a Special Constable offers plenty of variety. It is a chance to mix it up from your day job and experience a unique volunteering opportunity. You could find yourself:

  • responding to 999 calls
  • foot and vehicle patrols
  • tackling antisocial behaviour
  • road safety initiatives
  • house-to-house enquiries
  • helping ensure public safety and security at both local and major events
  • presenting evidence in court
  • taking part in ‘hotspot’ operations to tackle underage drinking, criminal damage, and nuisance and public disorder
  • offering crime prevention advice

Besides volunteering alongside officers in our Response and Neighbourhood teams, more experienced Specials also have the opportunity to join our Traffic team, helping to keep our roads safe and tackle dangerous drivers.

How will you take care of my wellbeing as a volunteer?

We invest in a whole host of wellbeing measures to make sure you’re safe, healthy and supported while you’re volunteering for us. Our 24/7 employee assistance line gives you access to welfare counselling, our mental health first aiders are on-hand to offer immediate support and our award-winning trauma team are available if you’ve attended an incident of a distressing nature or faced an assault whilst on duty. Meanwhile our range of staff support associations – from the AccessABILITY association to our LGBT+ association are here to support and represent your needs, beliefs and values.

What skills do I need to join?

We are looking for much of the same personal qualities in Specials Constables that we look for in regular Police Officers – integrity, honesty, tact and communication skills. We are looking for individuals who thrive on variety, extensive public contact and a high level of personal responsibility. Make sure to read our full eligibility criteria before you apply.

About the Special Constabulary

Volunteering as a Special Constable offers plenty of variety. It is a chance to mix it up from your day job and experience a unique volunteering opportunity. You could find yourself:

Our 130+ Northumbria Specials have the same uniform and same powers as regular officers and deal with the same types of incidents as their officer colleagues. Our invaluable volunteers help to build links between policing and the communities in which they live, work and serve and form an integral part of British policing.

Volunteering as a Special offers plenty of variety, and a chance to mix it up from your day job. You could find yourself:

  • responding to 999 calls
  • foot and vehicle patrols
  • tackling antisocial behaviour
  • road safety initiatives
  • house-to-house enquiries
  • helping ensure public safety and security at both local and major events
  • presenting evidence in court
  • taking part in ‘hotspot’ operations to tackle underage drinking, criminal damage, and nuisance and public disorder
  • offering crime prevention advice

Besides volunteering alongside officers in our Response and Neighbourhood teams, more experienced Specials also have the opportunity to join our Traffic team, helping to keep our roads safe and tackle dangerous drivers.

We are looking for much of the same personal qualities in Specials Constables that we look for in regular Police Officers – integrity, honesty, tact and communication skills. We are looking for individuals who thrive on variety, extensive public contact and a high level of personal responsibility. Make sure to read our full eligibility criteria before you apply.

We invest in a whole host of wellbeing measures to make sure you’re safe, healthy and supported while you’re volunteering for us. Our 24/7 employee assistance line gives you access to welfare counselling, our mental health first aiders are on-hand to offer immediate support and our award-winning trauma team are available if you’ve attended an incident of a distressing nature or faced an assault whilst on duty. Meanwhile our range of staff support associations – from the AccessABILITY association to our LGBT+ association are here to support and represent your needs, beliefs and values.

Join an information event and become a Special Constable with #TeamNP

Sign up

Benefits

We want to get the most out of the time you volunteer at TeamNP. As a Special Constable, you’ll have access to many of our force benefits including in-station gyms, access to our employee assistance programme and discounted travel. Find out more about benefits and reasons to volunteer at TeamNP.

Sports & social clubs

From boxing to basketball, there are plenty of teams and clubs for you to join and be a part of the thriving sports scene at Northumbria Police. As part of your membership, you’ll also get access to the NP gyms located at a number of our stations.

Employee assistance

Our EAP gives you and your immediate family 24/7 access to a team of trained wellbeing and counselling advisers. The support they offer is confidential, independent and unbiased, and covers both personal and professional issues.

Blue Light card

Providing members with 1000s of amazing discounts online and on the high street from large national retailers to local businesses. Sign up for just £4.99 for two years’ membership.

Discounted Travel

Free travel on the Tyne and Wear Metro network and other local services when you have successfully achieved Directed Patrol Status (signed off as Independent). T&Cs apply.

Police Federation

As a Special Constable you’ll have the opportunity to join the Police Federation of England & Wales (PFEW).

Benefits

We want to get the most out of the time you volunteer at TeamNP. As a Special Constable, you’ll have access to many of our force benefits including in-station gyms, access to our employee assistance programme and discounted travel.

  • Sports & social clubs

  • Employee assistance programme

  • Blue light card

  • Discounted travel

  • Police Federation

Find out more

What you need to know before you apply

What you need to know before you apply

Frequently asked questions

Can I choose where I’ll be based?2022-05-19T08:34:37+01:00

You can request to operate from a particular location and we will aim to accommodate your preference. Once you’re at the final offer stage of the application process, you’ll speak with our Talent Acquisition team where you can let them know you’re preferred area. If successful, we’ll update you on the station you’ll be based at before you begin the training programme.

What hours do I need to be able to commit?2022-05-17T17:09:20+01:00

Those committed to taking on this exciting and rewarding role will need to complete a minimum of 200 hours annually, equating to 4 hours per week. This includes time spent performing duty and undertaking training.  However, you will get most benefit if you are able to work a full 8-12 hour shift with your regular officer colleagues.

You can also get the best from your volunteering by working our peak times of evenings/nights, weekends, bank holidays and key events in the sporting calendar. Becoming a volunteer Special Constable is a commitment and it’s important that you consider how this will fit into your work, family and social life.

What training will I receive?2022-05-18T16:28:39+01:00

Special Constable training is currently a blended approach of classroom based training, pre-recorded sessions and live online sessions which you log into from home.

The training will be held over an 18-week period, made up of Saturdays (8am to 4pm) Thursdays (6pm to 8pm/10pm) and some Sundays.

The course will involve training in: Professional Standards, Self Defence, First Aid, ICT, Legislation, Powers, Policies and Procedures and more.

After successful completion of your training, you will be expected to work through a portfolio, demonstrating your competency in different areas of the Special Constable role – once complete, you will have demonstrated that you can carry out the role safely and lawfully, and will be given a level of independence.

When will I start as a Special Constable?2023-12-22T15:03:14+00:00

We accept applications for Special Constables year-round. However the next start date for training is scheduled for August 2024.

Do you cover any of my expenses?2022-05-18T11:09:59+01:00

Yes, as a Special Constable, you are entitled to claim for your mileage to and from your police base. We will of course provide your uniform and kit required for duty too.

How fit do I need to be for the role?2022-05-18T11:11:06+01:00

The fitness test is designed to assess whether you’ve got the stamina needed to be a volunteer Special Constable, not an Olympic athlete.

It involves a multi-stage shuttle run, also known as the ‘bleep test’, which is a physical test of your aerobic capacity (stamina). It involves running between two points that are 15 metres apart (a “shuttle”). Your pace will steadily increase with each shuttle. The idea is to reach the other side before the next bleep. You need to be able to reach level 5.4 – which is around a steady jog pace.

If a disability or medical condition makes it difficult to complete the standard fitness test, we offer an alternative test, where candidates can walk or run on a treadmill, with the gradient increasing over time.

Join an information event and become a Special Constable with #TeamNP

Ready to find out more about becoming a Special Constable? Join one of our information events where you can learn much more about being a Special Constable. You’ll get to meet some of our current serving colleagues, our training sergeant and recruitment team. This is a great opportunity to ask questions and find out more!

Click on the button below to “sign up”, and you’ll be contacted with an invite to our next information event.

Sign up