Eligibility Criteria

We welcome applications from people of all different backgrounds, cultures, religions, ages, gender and sexual orientation. However, there are some eligibility conditions that all applicants need to meet, so please check that you meet our requirements before submitting an application.

Age & Citizenship

You need to be 17 or over to apply but you must be 18 by the time of employment. Applicants should be British citizens, or passport holders from a full EU member state.

You can also apply if you're a Commonwealth citizen or foreign national who is resident in the UK with indefinite leave to remain. Applicants must have been resident in the UK for the three years immediately preceding application.

Criminal Record

If you have a criminal record, this doesn't mean you're automatically ineligible; it depends on the nature of your conviction.

Please declare cautions or convictions on your application form. If you have any questions on this, you can contact careers@bch.police.uk for advice.


Tattoos on your face, neck, arms or hands need to be reviewed on an individual basis.

Please supply photos and measurements of any tattoos along with your application.

Financial Situation

If you are in financial debt or have financial problems, you may still pass our vetting process as each case is looked at on an individual case by case basis. It is therefore important that you are open, honest and transparent in disclosing your financial matters.

Debt only become a problem where they are substantial and individuals fail to take remedial action or where they are caused by compulsive behaviour, such as gambling. These situations may indicate a sign of financial irresponsibility to the extent that the individual could become vulnerable to financial inducement.The specific circumstances surrounding those who have existing County Court Judgments [CCJ] outstanding against them or have been registered Bankrupt and have not discharged their bankruptcy, will be looked into on a case by case basis.

Minimum Entry Requirements

You must hold a full manual driving licence.

The minimum education requirement is a Level 3 qualification. This is defined as two A levels, but there are other qualifications that are equivalent.

Pre-appointment checks

If you are successful in the selection process, you will receive a conditional offer, and we will start progressing your pre-appointment checks, which include: vetting, references, medical checks, drugs test and a fitness test.

You must be in good health with a body mass index (BMI) between 18 and 30. Your eyesight must be good and will be tested by distance, near sight and colour vision. You can apply if you wear spectacles or contact lenses.

You must have good fitness levels: you will need to achieve 5.4 on a bleep test.

For more information on pre-appointment checks, please see the applicant help section.

Applicant help


As a police officer, you're working in a position of trust. That's why every potential police officer recruit goes through a thorough vetting stage as part of their application process. This includes disclosing the behaviour of your family and friends to ensure that you aren't vulnerable to extortion or blackmail. The vetting process also measures you against the College of Policing's Code of Ethics, which considers a number of other factors. If you're in doubt about whether you need to disclose something or not, it's best to include it.

Vetting helps identify people who are unsuitable to work in the police service. This includes those who are unsuitable through criminal activity or association, those who have a clear lack of honesty and those who are financially vulnerable.

Where an individual has failed to declare a conviction, caution or outstanding charges the application will be rejected on integrity grounds.

The Chief Constable reserves the right to reject any application.

Education Requirement

You'll need to meet our minimum entry requirements and demonstrate a passion and commitment to providing a first-class policing service to our communities.

You Need;

GCSE Maths and English (grade 4 or C or above)


Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA)-recognised functional skills


Either Two A Levels (or equivalent) equivalent to 32 or more UCAS points. Further information on UCAS points can be found here.


One year's relevant work experience (see list below)

You will be invited to complete an aptitude test followed by a suitability discussion where an assessment will be made on their ability to meet the academic demands of the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship. Applicants who pass the suitability discussion criteria will have met the university entry requirements.

You must also meet the eligibility for becoming a police officer and pass the Police SEARCH® Recruit Assessment Centre. See the College of Policing website for more information.

Qualifications guidance

You will be asked to provide evidence of your academic qualifications. If you do not have copies of your GCSE, O Level, CSE or A Level certificates, you can request a certified statement of results.

Apprenticeship applicants need approved Level 2 qualifications in GCSE Maths and English (grade 4 or C or above). Level 3 qualifications points can be accrued through various qualification types which include A Levels, NVQ Level 3 and BTECs. What different qualifications levels mean.

Don't have the grades?Don't despair

If you don't have A Levels or equivalent at required grades but have relevant experience (as listed below) we will ask you to complete an online assessment and have a further discussion with you.

Relevant experience (one year unless otherwise stated):

  • Armed Forces - 4+ years' experience required
  • Nursing / care sector
  • Social work
  • Youth work
  • Charity work
  • Teaching
  • Experience in the justice and law enforcement sectors
  • Police staff - particularly custody, public contact/demand hub/enquiry office roles, investigative roles
  • PCSO or Special Constable
  • Criminal justice sector/CPS/courts
  • Border Force
  • Prison Service
  • Relevant local authority experience which has involved close and sustained working with police
  • Experience of emergency services - ambulance, fire
  • Experience of cyber/digital and financial fraud/crimes
  • Roles which have focused on promotion of equality of opportunity and inclusion

You can find details of police staff roles on our website under 'current vacancies' or please consider joining as a Special Constable (volunteer Police Officer) where you volunteer a minimum of 16 hours per month.

Register Your Interest

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Register Your Interest

In order to start your journey, you need to accept the Correspondence Cookie. This will allow us to send you email communication.