Special Constables are a vital part of the police service, helping to prevent crime and interacting with the diverse communities we serve.

They are volunteer police officers with full constabulary powers. They:

  • assist with local police initiatives
  • give at least four hours service per week.
  • Assist regular police officers
  • increase visibility and public reassurance

They also take part in:

  • crime reduction initiatives
  • community partnership projects

There are many benefits for individuals, the police service and the local community.

As a Special Constable you will be provided with full training, a uniform, and out of pocket expenses and have all the powers and authority of regular officers.

Eligibility to become a special constable

Applicants to the Special Constabulary must be:

  • of good character
  • at least 18 years old on application
  • in good health.

Although you do not need any formal qualifications, a good standard of education is required and your eyesight must be within acceptable limits.

The recruitment process will assess your suitability in a variety of areas but we are mainly looking for:

  • Commitment
  • Motivation
  • Flexibility
  • good interpersonal skills,
  • the ability to think on your feet in challenging situations

Convictions and cautions

Convictions or cautions will not necessarily preclude you from appointment. It will depend on their nature and the circumstances of the offence. Failure to disclose convictions or cautions will, however, result in your application being terminated.


Tattoos are not a bar to appointment. However some tattoos could potentially offend members of the public or colleagues or could discredit the police service. It depends on their size, nature and location, and sometimes on the extent.

We won’t accept candidates with tattoos, which are visible on the hands, face or neck.

We won’t accept candidates with tattoos considered offensive by GMP i.e. rude, lewd, crude, racist, sexist, sectarian, homophobic or violent, whether the tattoos are visible or not.

We will consider candidates with tattoos that are non-visible and considered to be non-offensive by GMP provided that they can be covered by uniform or clothing whilst on duty (for example, a tattoo on the forearm should be covered by long sleeves).

Financial position

Special Constables are in a privileged position with regard to access to information and could be considered potentially vulnerable to corruption. Applicants should not therefore be under pressure from undischarged debts or liabilities and should be able to manage loans and debts sensibly.

Ineligible occupations

People with certain occupations are not allowed to become a special constable. These are:

  • Armed forces personnel
  • Traffic wardens, civil enforcement officers and school crossing patrols
  • Neighbourhood, street wardens and other uniformed patrol wardens
  • Highways England Officers employed in an "on-road" capacity
  • Police Community Support Officers
  • Members of employers’ police forces and private constabularies
  • Magistrates, judges, justices' clerks and CPS employees
  • NCA staff designated with immigration officer and/or revenue and customs officer powers
  • Members of police authorities
  • Immigration officers

For further information about eligibility, please email us.

If you have any general queries about becoming a special constable, please email us