Police Ranks of The United Kingdom - Identification Numbers

Identification Numbers

All officers have a unique identification number. These are usually referred to as shoulder or collar numbers, referring to the fact that they were once worn on the uniform collar and later on the epaulettes by constables and sergeants. Uniformed officers in many forces still wear them on the epaulettes, but other forces have badges or other ways of displaying their identification numbers. Kent Police, for instance, refers to its numbers as force numbers and officers wear them on a velcro tab on their stab vest or on a badge attached to their shirt or tunic. Officers in all forces of the rank of inspector or above do not usually wear their numbers.

In most forces these identification numbers are simple numbers, with 1 to 5 digits.

The Metropolitan Police, being a much bigger force, uses a different system:

  • Sergeant - Borough Code and 1 or 2 digits
  • Constable - Borough Code and 3 digits (Though Metropolitan Police constables based in the Borough of Westminster have 4 digits)
  • Special Constable - Borough Code and 4 digits, usually beginning with the number 5
  • PCSO - Borough Code and 4 digits, the first digit being a 7 or an 8

The Borough Code is a two-letter code preceding collar numbers. Before the reorganisation into boroughs, each division had a different code. A few other forces still use divisional codes.

Read more about this topic:  Police Ranks Of The United Kingdom

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