Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes at a police force? Recently, Dame Ann and I had the opportunity to visit Thames Valley Police (TVP) and gain insight into their various departments and initiatives.

One of the highlights of the visit was meeting Detective Superintendent Stuart Bosley, who leads the Force in regards to Rape and Sexual Offence (RASO) investigations. Join us as we take you through the day at TVP and share the fascinating work being done to improve outcomes for victims and combat crime. In September 2022, TVP introduced the Rape and Sexual Offences (RASO) – Supports, Standards and Performance (SSP) Team. This dedicated team, spread across the force, provides practical support and brings in national best practices to enhance RASO investigations. Their ultimate goal is to improve outcomes for victims of these heinous crimes. It was inspiring to see the commitment and passion with which the team members approach their work. They are making a real difference in the lives of survivors and ensuring justice is served.

Next, we had the pleasure of learning about TVP’s relatively new Digital Investigation & Intelligence Team. Formed in 2021, this team has quickly established itself within the Force Intelligence and Specialist Operations Team. Comprised of Digital Media Investigators (DMI’s), Digital Trainers, and the Internet Intelligence and Investigation Team, they play a crucial role in leveraging technology to gather evidence and combat digital crime. The team’s expertise and dedication were evident as they shared their insights into the ever-evolving landscape of digital investigations.

After meeting the DII team we were given a glimpse into the Force Control Room at Abingdon. The Contact Management service, a collaboration between Thames Valley and Hampshire, handles emergency (999) and non-emergency (101) calls from the public, as well as in-person interactions at police stations. The dedicated team of professionals in the Control Room plays a vital role in ensuring efficient and effective communication between the public and the police, promptly dispatching officers and resources when needed. Witnessing their seamless coordination and commitment to public safety was truly impressive.

During lunch, we had the pleasure of dining at Abingdon Police Station with the Chief Constable and his team. It was an informal and welcoming setting, where we had the chance to catch up with Jason Hogg and his team. The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Matthew Barber, was kind enough to join us after fulfilling another commitment in Berkshire. It was a fantastic opportunity to discuss various initiatives and gain insights into their perspectives on community safety.

Next on the agenda was a visit to the Roads Policing Unit (RPU), where we had the opportunity to engage with operational officers and learn about the equipment they rely on daily. Comprising over 350 officers of all ranks, supported by police staff colleagues, the RPU is dedicated to delivering a first-class service and reducing road casualties. Their approach combines enforcement with education and discretion, aiming to make our roads and communities safer for everyone. The professionalism and expertise demonstrated by the officers were commendable.

We were then introduced to the newly established Rural Crime Task Force, a force-wide team focused on combatting rural crime across Thames Valley. Led by Rural Crime Taskforce Inspector, Stuart Hutchings.

Finally, we had the opportunity to delve into the fascinating world of forensics. The Forensic Investigations Unit at TVP consists of various specialized departments that apply scientific methods and techniques to crime investigations. With approximately two hundred highly skilled civilian staff, the unit covers a wide range of disciplines, including DNA analysis, fingerprints, digital forensics, imaging, drugs, and trace evidence. Their wealth of knowledge and experience ensures that no stone is left unturned when it comes to solving crimes and bringing offenders to justice.

All in all we had a fantastic day and we’d like to thank Nigel Welham for organising, accompanying, driving and hosting us throughout the day.

Ranjit Singh
Good Will Ambassador

Notes to Editors

Dame Ann Limb DBE DL biography

Dame Ann Limb is Chair of the City and Guilds of London Institute and from 2015-2021 was Chair of the Scouts, the UK’s largest youth engagement charity. She is the first woman, and openly gay, to hold these roles. She is also Chair of the UK Innovation Corridor, the country’s globally significant life sciences cluster stretching from London to Cambridge and Chair of The Lloyds Bank Foundation. Between 1976 and 2001 Ann enjoyed a successful career in Further Education as a College Principal in Milton Keynes and Cambridge and in the civil service, where she was responsible for the UK governments flagship digital learning initiative, learndirect. Dame Ann is Deputy Char of the Prince’s Foundation, a heritage-led regeneration charity. And Vice President of the social justice charity she founded in 1998, the Helena Kennedy Foundation. In the 2011 Birthday Honours, Ann was awarded the OBE, in 2015 ‘upgraded’ to CBE and in the Platinum Jubilee Honours 2022 elevated to the rank of Dame Commander of the British Empire, DBE. In 2019, Dame Ann was named #1 LBGTQ+ public sector role model in the OUTstanding List and one of the most 50 most influential women born in the North of England in the Northern Power Women Power List.

About The Open University

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