Thames Valley Police unveil updated uniform

Thames Valley Police unveil updated uniform

Chief Insp Dave Parker in the new uniform

The current uniform

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by

IT IS very different from the long heavy tunics and top hats Britain’s first policemen wore.

Thames Valley Police are ditching their traditional bobby’s helmet.

From January next year, your local officer will go on the beat in a modern lightweight uniform featuring a black polo-style T-shirt, black combat trousers and a peaked cap.

They are trading in their more formal current attire of white shirt or blouse, black tie, black office trousers and the traditional pointed ‘custodian’ helmet.

The new look comes after complaints from officers, who felt the current uniform was outdated and not practical.

They said the shirt got dirty, was too difficult to iron and became transparent when it got wet.

Trials were held last year and the new uniform was well received — although a proposal to use baseball caps was dropped.

Ch Insp Dave Parker, who co-ordinated the uniform project, said: “We felt the baseball cap was a step too far away from the professional image the force wants to portray.

“The job involves a lot of movement, bending down looking for things, so the combat trousers are a more practical option. The white shirt also showed dirt more easily than the black one.

“A high percentage of women complained about the cut of the shirt, because they’re not quite as tailormade as they would be if they were buying a blouse for themselves from somewhere like Marks & Spencer.”

Angela Scott-Smith, a Colour Me Beautiful Image consultant from Wheatley, said: “Combat trousers aren’t flattering for everyone, as pockets on the leg don’t look good for those with shorter or dumpy legs.

“And it’s a shame they went for black shirts over a nice charcoal, which is much more flattering and isn’t as draining. But all in all, I think the choices they’ve made are the best options for practicality.”

Officers who are office-based will continue to wear the existing uniform, but those who do operational work will be able to request one set of the new uniform.

awilliams@oxfordmail.co.uk

Comments (14)

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7:06am Sat 28 Mar 09

old zimmer says...

Give us a twirl. Lovely
Give us a twirl. Lovely old zimmer
  • Score: 0

8:25am Sat 28 Mar 09

Wesley_Smith says...

Suits you sir
Suits you sir Wesley_Smith
  • Score: 0

10:17am Sat 28 Mar 09

bagsie says...

It looks much more comfortable for sitting at a desk or driving a car which would appear to be what most policemen do. And how about the additional cost when we are in such difficult financial times, bearing in mind the above average increases of council tax in Oxfordshire. Will the new uniform help to catch more criminals or just make not catching criminals more comfortable and stylish. In other words this initiative is a complete waste of taxpayers money at a most inappropriate time.
It looks much more comfortable for sitting at a desk or driving a car which would appear to be what most policemen do. And how about the additional cost when we are in such difficult financial times, bearing in mind the above average increases of council tax in Oxfordshire. Will the new uniform help to catch more criminals or just make not catching criminals more comfortable and stylish. In other words this initiative is a complete waste of taxpayers money at a most inappropriate time. bagsie
  • Score: 0

10:24am Sat 28 Mar 09

Zimmer says...

No,No,No,No,No. It's B***dy awful. Why do they give em trainers or combat fatigues. They are supposed to stand out in a crowd and be recognised instead of merging in.
They have plain clothed departments to merge in.
It's time TVP got back to basics and remeber what their role in society is and what WE ARE PAYING THEM FOR!!!!!!
No,No,No,No,No. It's B***dy awful. Why do they give em trainers or combat fatigues. They are supposed to stand out in a crowd and be recognised instead of merging in. They have plain clothed departments to merge in. It's time TVP got back to basics and remeber what their role in society is and what WE ARE PAYING THEM FOR!!!!!! Zimmer
  • Score: 0

12:54pm Sat 28 Mar 09

Lammy says...

I agree .Will it make them any better at catching crooks ? I think not.They can't catch any now,except motorists,so I fail to see the benefit.Total waste of taxpayers money.
I agree .Will it make them any better at catching crooks ? I think not.They can't catch any now,except motorists,so I fail to see the benefit.Total waste of taxpayers money. Lammy
  • Score: 0

3:56pm Sat 28 Mar 09

oxfordmaillogin says...

Like where i work....

weak management!
Like where i work.... weak management! oxfordmaillogin
  • Score: 0

4:02pm Sat 28 Mar 09

Andrew:Oxford says...

Quote: "“And it’s a shame they went for black shirts over a nice charcoal, which is much more flattering and isn’t as draining."

Don't worry. As everyone knows who has ever bought a black shirt, after the third wash it's going charcoal. After the 47th wash it'll be a right state.
Quote: "“And it’s a shame they went for black shirts over a nice charcoal, which is much more flattering and isn’t as draining." Don't worry. As everyone knows who has ever bought a black shirt, after the third wash it's going charcoal. After the 47th wash it'll be a right state. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: 0

6:03pm Sat 28 Mar 09

gwaymoaw says...

It's bad enough that we already have ineffectual 'plastic policemen'. Now we'll have our 'real policemen' looking more like slightly camp security guards. That'll gain a lot of public respect - not !
It's bad enough that we already have ineffectual 'plastic policemen'. Now we'll have our 'real policemen' looking more like slightly camp security guards. That'll gain a lot of public respect - not ! gwaymoaw
  • Score: 0

9:17pm Sat 28 Mar 09

Zimmer says...

The more I think about this the more I feel that this has not been thought through by Senior Officers / Police Authority. Historical 'Blackshirts' were the uniform of the Fascists in Italy between 1922 & 1943 and pre War in this Country being associated with the Moseley fascist movement. Have Senior officers become so young/ naive for this fact not to have crossed their minds. There are still allot of people alive in this country that remember that era. The Police will lay themselves open to taunts if they go down this road!
I think it will further erode the publics confidence in the Police!.
The lame excuse about white shirts not being practical has to be laid at the rank and file police officers of the 70s and 80s who clamoured for white shirts to replace the light blue ones with detachable collars that had been standard issue since close necked tunics were abolished in the 1950s.
IT is a FAD and should be treated as such by Senior Officer.
The more I think about this the more I feel that this has not been thought through by Senior Officers / Police Authority. Historical 'Blackshirts' were the uniform of the Fascists in Italy between 1922 & 1943 and pre War in this Country being associated with the Moseley fascist movement. Have Senior officers become so young/ naive for this fact not to have crossed their minds. There are still allot of people alive in this country that remember that era. The Police will lay themselves open to taunts if they go down this road! I think it will further erode the publics confidence in the Police!. The lame excuse about white shirts not being practical has to be laid at the rank and file police officers of the 70s and 80s who clamoured for white shirts to replace the light blue ones with detachable collars that had been standard issue since close necked tunics were abolished in the 1950s. IT is a FAD and should be treated as such by Senior Officer. Zimmer
  • Score: 0

9:17pm Sat 28 Mar 09

beetle & wedge says...

It would be nice if they had guns and shot scummers
It would be nice if they had guns and shot scummers beetle & wedge
  • Score: 0

3:28am Sun 29 Mar 09

Terry Chandler says...

The wpc's should wear bikini's.
The wpc's should wear bikini's. Terry Chandler
  • Score: 0

7:21am Sun 29 Mar 09

old zimmer says...

Not the ones in Oxford Terry, theyr'e a right bunch of mingers. 20 pinters at least ! Although some of the Hobby-Bobbies aren't bad
Not the ones in Oxford Terry, theyr'e a right bunch of mingers. 20 pinters at least ! Although some of the Hobby-Bobbies aren't bad old zimmer
  • Score: 0

10:02am Sun 29 Mar 09

oneviewpoint says...

If you dumb down the uniform you dumb down the effectiveness( or perceived effectiveness of officers.)
I suppose one good point is they have not adopted the chav cap to blend in !!
If you dumb down the uniform you dumb down the effectiveness( or perceived effectiveness of officers.) I suppose one good point is they have not adopted the chav cap to blend in !! oneviewpoint
  • Score: 0

11:45am Wed 1 Apr 09

Jimmer says...

He looks like Daffyd from Little Britain in those photos!
He looks like Daffyd from Little Britain in those photos! Jimmer
  • Score: 0

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