Metropolitan Police Service

Metropolitan Police Service
Emblème du Metropolitan Police Service.svg
Logo
Flag of the Metropolitan Police Service.svg
Flag
Common nameThe Met[1]
AbbreviationMPS[2]
MottoTotal Policing[1]
Agency overview
Formed29 September 1829; 189 years ago (1829-09-29)[3]
Preceding agencies
Employees43,000+ in total[5]
31,075 police officers[5]
8,732 police staff[5]
1,464 PCSOs[5]
Volunteers2,763 special constables
1,500 Met Police volunteers
3,658 volunteer police cadets
Annual budget£3.24 billion[6]
Legal personalityPolice force
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdictionGreater London, England, United Kingdom
England Police Forces (Metropolitan).svg
Map of police area
Size1,578 km2 (609 sq mi)
Populationmore than 8 million[8]
Legal jurisdictionEngland and Wales
(throughout the whole of the United Kingdom, including Scotland and Northern Ireland, under certain limited circumstances)
Primary governing bodyMayor's Office for Policing and Crime
Secondary governing bodyHome Office
Constituting instruments
General nature
Operational structure
Overviewed byHome Office/HMIC/IPOC
HeadquartersNew Scotland Yard

Police officers31,075 full time
2,763 special constables
PCSOs1,464
Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime responsible
Agency executives
Facilities
Stations180[www.met.police.uk

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), formerly and still commonly known as the Metropolitan Police and informally as the Met, Scotland Yard or "the Yard", is the territorial police force responsible for law enforcement in the Metropolitan Police District, which currently consists of the 32 London boroughs.[9] The MPD does not include the "square mile" of the City of London, which is policed by the much smaller City of London Police.

The Met also has significant national responsibilities, such as co-ordinating and leading on UK-wide national counter-terrorism matters and protecting the Royal Family, certain members of Her Majesty's Government and others as deemed appropriate.[10] As the police force for the capital, the Met has significant unique responsibilities and challenges within its police area, such as protecting 164 foreign embassies and High Commissions,[11] policing Heathrow Airport (the busiest airport in Europe), policing and protecting the Palace of Westminster, and dealing with significantly more protests and events than any other force in the country (3,500 such events in 2016).[11]

As of March 2018, the Met had 40,327 full-time personnel. This included 30,390 police officers, 8,027 police staff, 1,315 police community support officers and 595 designated officers.[12] This number excludes the 2,246 special constables, who work voluntarily part-time (a minimum of 16 hours a month) and who have the same powers and uniform as their regular colleagues. This makes the Metropolitan Police, in terms of officer numbers, the largest police force in the United Kingdom by a significant margin, and one of the biggest in the world.[13] In terms of its police area (primary geographic area of responsibility), leaving its national responsibilities aside, the Met has the eighth-smallest police area of the territorial police forces in the United Kingdom.

The overall operational leader of the force is the Commissioner, whose formal title is Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis. The Commissioner is answerable, responsible and accountable to the Queen, the Home Office and the Mayor of London, through the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime. The post of Commissioner was first held jointly by Sir Charles Rowan and Sir Richard Mayne. Cressida Dick was appointed Commissioner in April 2017.

A number of informal names and abbreviations are applied to the Metropolitan Police Service, the most common being the Met. In colloquial London (or Cockney slang), it is sometimes referred to as the Old Bill.[14] The Met is also referred to as Scotland Yard after the location of its original headquarters in a road called Great Scotland Yard in Whitehall.[15] The Met's current headquarters is New Scotland Yard, situated on the Victoria Embankment.

History

The Metropolitan Police Service, whose officers became affectionately known as "bobbies", was founded in 1829 by Robert Peel under the Metropolitan Police Act 1829 and on 29 September of that year, the first constables of the service appeared on the streets of London.[16] In 1839, the Marine Police Force, which had been formed in 1798, was amalgamated into the Metropolitan Police.[17] In 1837, it also incorporated with the Bow Street Horse Patrol that had been organised in 1805.[18]

In 1999, the organisation was described as "institutionally racist" in the Macpherson Report. Just under twenty years later, police leaders said that this was no longer the case, but that the service would be "disproportionately white" for at least another one hundred years.[19]