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Bedfordshire starts hunt for new Chief as Forsyth retires

Another search is beginning to find a new Chief Constable for Bedfordshire.
Published - 08/07/2022 By - Chris Smith

Another experienced Chief Constable is retiring – sparking a fresh mailout to potential candidates.

Bedfordshire Police Chief Constable Garry Forsyth has announced he is stepping down from his role after five years with the force.

He has 28 years’ service with policing across a number of forces including West Midlands Police and the Met and joined Bedfordshire as Deputy Chief Constable in 2017, becoming Chief two years later.

CC Forsyth is credited with turning Bedfordshire around to become recognised as one of the country's leading forces across a range of specialisms.

Earlier this year the force was graded ‘Outstanding’ for managing offenders and the force has also become a lead for mobile phone analysis.

He is also the national lead for Race, Religion and Belief and has played a key role in driving forward the Police Race Action Plan.

CC Forsyth said: “It has been an absolute honour to lead this force and I’m privileged to have had the opportunity to work with so many brilliant people, both within Bedfordshire Police and across the county, including partners and blue light services but also our incredible communities.

"Forces are coming to Bedfordshire from all over the country to see what we are doing and how we are doing it. I’m delighted our officers and staff are getting the recognition they so richly deserve.”

His last day in force will be in September.

But it means Bedfordshire is now the latest to start looking for a new leader in what HM Inpsectorate and Police and Crime Commissioners have warned is a limited pool.

A raft of forces including Cleveland and Norfolk have experienced problems.

The standard protocol is for a Police and Cirme Commissioner to mailshot every officer at eligible rank to apply – including people who have recently completed the Strategic Command Course.

The announcement was made just moments after the Metropolitan Police confirmed it had ended months of searching for a new Commissioner.

Bedfordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Festus Akinbusoye, said: “Garry leaves a legacy that sets Bedfordshire Police on a positive path. Despite its historic funding challenges, he has helped steer the force from being rated as ‘Inadequate’ just five years ago, to one of the best performing police forces overall. This did not happen by accident, and I thank him for his relentless focus on moving the force forward.

“As Police and Crime Commissioner, appointing a new Chief Constable is one of the most important parts of my role, and I look forward to commencing that recruitment process."

He added: In the meantime, I wish Garry a long and happy retirement when he leaves us later this year. I thank his family for their sacrifices and support during his time as our Chief Constable.”

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