How did it all go wrong for British policing?
When I joined the Metropolitan police in London in 1989, I soon became familiar with the often-repeated gripe by officers that "The Job's F*cked". That expression, always shortened in conversation simply to 'TJF', has been in constant usage since I joined.
Early in my service, I met a lovely, very elderly gent, who to my delight, told me some great stories about how he had served thirty years in the police in London and had retired in the 1950s, serving throughout the London Blitz. Quick as a flash, he asked me, 'Is the job still f*cked?' I laughingly confirmed that yes, it was.
Police officers seemingly therefore have always claimed that 'The Job's F*cked'. However, there is now a very real belief by officers right across almost every part of England and Wales, that The Job is now actually F*cked
On this site, I want to try and understand and explain how the British police service that I joined all those years ago, and that I love so much, has come to be so horribly damaged within what feels like quite a short period of time.
I want to write about what it's been like to be in the police for the last thirty years. How has it changed? When and why did those changes happen? What was it like to live through this tumultuous period in the history of British policing?
Most importantly, I want to sound an urgent warning that unless something changes very quickly, many more members of the British public are going to come to serious harm, and the people who harmed them will have little to fear from the police. Even if the changes started today, it's likely that it will take at least a generation to undo the damage of the last ten years.
In February 1989 I swore a solemn oath to Her Majesty the Queen that I would "Cause the peace to be kept and preserved, and prevent all offences against the persons and properties of Her Majesty's subjects". My loyalty now is to my family, friends and to law-abiding members of the British public. My loyalty is not, and never has been, to politicians of any colour or party, and particularly not to the reckless individuals who got the police service into the horrible mess that it now appears to be in
The book will be published by Biteback Publishing later this year, however I have included a couple of sections on this website to give you a flavour.
Everything that I write and say is motivated by a deep love for British policing and police officers, who have been treated very badly now for far too long by politicians and certain parts of the media. They deserve so much better.
The TJF podcast will be raising money for the Care of Police Survivors (COPS) charity. COPS supports the families of police officers who are killed on duty. Please click the image below to go straight to the page. No donation is too small.