POLICE officers from across the UK are being offered the chance to transfer to Scarborough – despite a force-wide recruitment freeze.
North Yorkshire Police are searching for an additional 20 officers to patrol in mainly the Scarborough and Filey areas, after a review identified a need for more officers in the east of the county.
The move has come despite the force embarking on a series of cost-cutting measures to fall into line with budget cuts.
Inspector Tony Quinn, of the Scarborough safer neighbourhood team, said: “I welcome the announcement as it will provide us with ready trained experienced officers who will be able to fill the anticipated vacancies which will arise as officers retire or transfer to specialist posts.
“I hope we get a good response to the advertisement as Scarborough is a great place to work and we have a long history of success in reducing crime.”
However, Insp Quinn warned potential recruits that they should not expect an easy job if they transfer to the east coast.
He added: “I wish to make clear to any applicants that whilst the coast is a great place to live and work it is also very busy and not for anyone who is thinking of coming here for a quieter life.”
A recruitment freeze was announced by North Yorkshire Police last year after it emerged that £24m would be slashed from its budget by 2014/15.
Other cash-saving measures in recent months have included cutting support posts and reducing the number of control rooms.
The North Yorkshire Police Authority also approved the use of Regulation A19, which allows the Chief Constable to force officers with more than 30 years’ service to retire.
The force has insisted the 20 new posts, at police constable and detective constable rank, will represent good value for the taxpayer.
At a community and police meeting for the North Bay, Northstead and Central Wards of Scarborough this week, PC Alex Parker said that North Yorkshire Police was continuing to perform well despite the cuts to its budget.
“I think it’s manageable. It’s about targeting and using our time wisely,” he said.
“We are number one of all forces similar to us. Our detection rate and crime rate are top. Nationally, we are well below the average crime rate.”