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Any experience of band members in the police service?


Len_derby

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51 minutes ago, Bassfinger said:

Theres nothing in regulations that requires an officer to be confirmed in rank prior to specialising, and while not especially widespread it is becoming more common.  (Source, Mrs Bassfinger, ex Major crime T/DCI, who still has a brother and a sister in the job).

 

Its not so unusual now to see bobbies with a particular aptitude moving into other roles, CID in particular, well before being confirmed. Thanks the the Cabbage of Policing its now not possible to scratch your arriss and pass wind without being a qualified D, and this is causing a serious shortage of candidates in roles such as collision investigation, etc.

 

Several forces are now taking officers straight into CID, although this didn't start well with the pilot when every single one of the Met's officers on the first intake, all 43 of them, failed the phyisical on the first day...

 

I did briefly consider it when I left the Army, but I decided to buckle down and belatedly sort my eduction out instead.

 

True, although CID are so stretched these days that the hours are through the roof. You're right, in that some do specialise early. However, a lot of the departments people go into are long hours and last minute shift changes. I can't think of any examples of people landing into 8-4 Mon-Fri roles without a few years in. I'm sure a few do but it is the exception, not the norm. There's a real issue with new recruits leaving because it isn't quite like the coppers on the TV! 

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6 hours ago, chris_b said:

 

Many years ago we had a Sunday night residency in a local pub. They also did a lock in after. I thought we were being raided when a dozen coppers came in via the back door. They'd just come in for their regular nightly beer!!

 

"Crime won't crack itself!".

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4 hours ago, Paul S said:

I was in a band with a Detective Sergeant on drums for a couple of years.  It isn't the shifts that is the problem, you can plan around those.  It is the unforeseen, totally unpredictable, last minute 'having to stay on duty' stuff where the officer gets sent to a job towards the end of the shift and can't be relieved.  Unless you are unlucky it doesn't happen very often but when it does happen there is nothing that can be done about it.  Having deps lined up that can manage last minute availability would be the only way forward.  In our case she quit the band because she felt she was holding us back, which was a shame as she was a good drummer and a great laugh.

 

Very much this ^^

 

Had a couple of band mates years ago who joined the Met - neither of them felt they could hold down a band eventually as there was the constant risk of not getting away at the end of a shift if they made a difficult arrest late in the day, or we're having to secure a scene with no relief available etc etc

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3 hours ago, owen said:

I was introduced as "this is my bass player' once. Just the once though.

Ha ha, it's an in joke with us. She always calls me her bass player, so I return the compliment.

Shes such a great singer she can call me what she likes.

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23 hours ago, Cat Burrito said:

Core shift, she'll be up against it, a little. Once you get your 2yr probation out of the way you can specialise... There aren't  a lot of 8-4 type jobs in the police but they do exist. 

 

If the drummer going in is 19 she'll be doing the PDCA course rather than a graduate entry thing like Police Now. Effectively you're tied to that for three years now rather than the old probationary period which was two years. It's a lot of work too, outside of learning the job. I tutored a couple of people doing it and it was way more work (for them) than it was for the people who joined and did the diploma before them, for no extra benefit to the person doing it. There are loads of boring 8 to 4 office jobs in the police but they're not really open to anyone who hasn't finished their PDCA or probation and also, probably not what most people had in mind when joining (firearms licensing officer? Coroner's officer? Safeguarding? Snooze-fest posts that suit people who don't want to work shifts). 

 

She'll get prior notice of her shifts. She'll get the pattern so, if she doesn't move or change shift, you could plan out of a couple of years in advance. You will need deps handy because there will be abstractions outside of the pattern like cancelled rest days, court days etc and shifts that get extended that you just can't plan for. 

 

It can be made to work quite easily though, I know both a drummer and a keyboard player who were 24/7 cops (PC and Inspector respectively) that kept a pretty packed gigging schedule. 

 

Wish her luck from us anyway, we need people who really want to do the job and do it well. 

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5 hours ago, Chris2112 said:

probably not what most people had in mind when joining (firearms licensing officer? Coroner's officer? Safeguarding? Snooze-fest posts that suit people who don't want to work shifts). 

Most of those are civilianised now. I just want to pick you up on Safeguarding though. There's nothing snooze-fest about protecting societies most vulnerable, especially kids getting mixed up in gangs or with sex offenders. The role is what you make it and Safeguarding in a police way can be way more gritty than some of the more self styled macho roles. Other than that, I thought your post was bang on the money.

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1 hour ago, Cat Burrito said:

Most of those are civilianised now. I just want to pick you up on Safeguarding though. There's nothing snooze-fest about protecting societies most vulnerable, especially kids getting mixed up in gangs or with sex offenders. The role is what you make it and Safeguarding in a police way can be way more gritty than some of the more self styled macho roles. Other than that, I thought your post was bang on the money.

 

Yeah, most of those roles are civilian roles now, I was just trying to pick a couple of the top of my head that were driving a desk. There are still loads of opportunities to sit on an office and never go out though I don't think many sign up for that sort of thing and I'm always puzzled to see young-in-service cops taking up those jobs. 

 

Regarding safeguarding, I would never say it isn't valuable work. It is absolutely essential. It's part of everyone's job. But given that most of the work there is multi-agency or reviewing reports from other departments, I just wouldn't find it exciting. Most DC's I know there did their crime skills wanting to be a murder or major enquiry detective and ended up there on the promotion trail. A mate of mine (who hasn't done his crime skills either) moved there from neighbourhood to suit his home situation after his wife became unwell. He's happy with his lot because he hated beat work, it wouldn't work for me. 

 

I would still say that the OP's drummer would not end up in that sort of role for at least a few years unless she is desperate to work office hours. The frontline is a real laugh so I hope she enjoys herself. 

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To add some perspective, the band I’m in consists of 3 police officers and a paramedic. We seem to be able to make it work using a mixture of leave and rest days. The 3 of us that are in the police have roles not doing nights and 2 of us have zero chance of being late off which helps. Police regs stipulate you have to have your shifts published for 12 months in advance but they can get changed at short notice for stuff, less so if you’re not public order trained. The Paramedic has the most trouble due to not having a shift pattern set in stone. Getting together for regular practices is more difficult than gigs but again we make it work because we enjoy doing something completely different to our day jobs. We have 3 gigs lined up for December. 


If someone wants to book us then we don’t commit until all the band have checked their shift patterns and booked leave etc. People seem perfectly ok with this.

 

For the OP, I suspect your drummer will be ok with a little planning and common sense. I wouldn’t book a gig to start at  8pm if she’s off at say 6pm….just in case she’s late off. It’s quite easy to be 4-6 hours late off duty when you are on response shifts. My longest day was 17 hrs. 
 

If the drummer wants to play and be part of a band, she will make it work and if band wants her as part of the band, they will it work. 
 

 

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Friend of mine served over 30 years, now retired. Yes, it's shifts, but pattern is fixed and known months ahead. Only issue will be if something comes up towards the end of a shift and it runs over and little can be done about that. Whether that woudl be an issue would depend on which shift it was 

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It all depends which county and department. But the regulations are probably the same so she should know three months ahead what her duties are going to be. If she goes for a role ,after her initial training, that doesn't involve night shifts then she may be more committed to music. Some forces have their info on their internet pages.

Short notice, may happen. She may need to disclose she plays in a band...

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Never mind the police force, I myself work ad hoc, which basically means I never know when I will be working and for how long. We are a service company so we go where ever the work is. I get a call saying we have a job for you and its supposed to last two weeks. It may last three weeks or ten days and then when I get home I never know when they will call again. This is why we can't play at the moment. I had a position that was 28/28. We played during my month off but that ended and I am back to the ad hoc. I hate it. Music is my life and I can't play it.

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7 hours ago, Silky999 said:

 

If the drummer wants to play and be part of a band, she will make it work and if band wants her as part of the band, they will it work. 
 

 


Thanks for you response, and all the others from folks too. 
We certainly all do want to make it work, so I’m more optimistic now. 
Cheers Basschat! You win again! 👊

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On 11/11/2021 at 13:28, Steve Browning said:

When I first joined (what was then) Customs and Excise I was told about the Friday afternoon sessions drinking the seized booze while watching the seized films.

My mrs joined customs and Excise,many many moons ago. She tells tales of lots of drinking lol. It sounded like a great place. She has regularly gigged whilst on shifts. It can be done, also easier when you're younger. In my mid fifties now, I couldn't imagine doing a gig after a run of nights, or early shifts, but at 19 I would gig, be out all night and then go to work

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First band I was in had a copper as drummer.

 

He was in a Firearms Response Unit (or whatever they’re called) so spent most of his days driving around with the occasional emergency call out to some incident.

 

He knew his schedule well in advance and we booked gigs around it. 
 

I’d guess that your drummer may struggle to fit in gigs and practice when she’s doing her initial training but once she’s past that, it should be workable - although having a deep on hand for those last-minute emergencies probably won’t hurt.

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3 hours ago, SH73 said:

It all depends which county and department. But the regulations are probably the same so she should know three months ahead what her duties are going to be. If she goes for a role ,after her initial training, that doesn't involve night shifts then she may be more committed to music. Some forces have their info on their internet pages.

Short notice, may happen. She may need to disclose she plays in a band...


Ah that’s the other thing…….the raft of restrictions on their private lives including officers having to get permission to live at a different address(I kid you not!), not getting into debt and being held to a higher standard of behaviour off duty, she will have to declare the band work as a business interest and get it authorised if she gets any kind of reward for it. That could mean paid gigs, free drinks etc. 

 

As to seeing or smelling illegal things whilst at gigs…..I become very short sighted and nose blind. The only reason I’m there is because the band is playing so unless Pablo Escobar is running a drugs cartel from gig, the band are like the 3 wise monkeys. 

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7 hours ago, Silky999 said:


Ah that’s the other thing…….the raft of restrictions on their private lives including officers having to get permission to live at a different address(I kid you not!), not getting into debt and being held to a higher standard of behaviour off duty, she will have to declare the band work as a business interest and get it authorised if she gets any kind of reward for it. That could mean paid gigs, free drinks etc. 

 

As to seeing or smelling illegal things whilst at gigs…..I become very short sighted and nose blind. The only reason I’m there is because the band is playing so unless Pablo Escobar is running a drugs cartel from gig, the band are like the 3 wise monkeys. 

Yep

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