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Ben3157

Transfer from British Transport Police

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Ben3157

Hi all,

Im currently a service special constable with a home office force, and am thinking of applying for the British Transport Police student officer positions. Looking ahead, if I am successful and in the future decide to join a home office force, which forces accept BTP transferees? And do any make you redo the entire student officer phase?

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MindTheGap

To my knowledge only about 5 forces reject BTP transfers - most accept them as training is the same plus a bit more.

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Radman
6 hours ago, Ben3157 said:

Hi all,

Im currently a service special constable with a home office force, and am thinking of applying for the British Transport Police student officer positions. Looking ahead, if I am successful and in the future decide to join a home office force, which forces accept BTP transferees? And do any make you redo the entire student officer phase?

As above most forces take BTP on as direct transferees, a few don't (I only know of two.)

I wouldn't go into BTP unless you're actually interested in doing the policing, it is a different kettle of fish in some regards to HO Policing - I've worked with a probationer who had zero interest in BTP and openly admitted to using the force as a 'stepping post' as he called it... Not an attitude I would like to see again as it was counter-productive.

BTP has its flaws certainly, but when you come around to the idea that you're policing a specialist environment, with its own specialist pieces of legislation that in alot of cases make dealing with matters 10x easier than you would be out on the street amongst the public you realise there is alot to the force that is worth staying for. I've got 8 years in now as a PC, I have got itchy feet to do something else but haven't made my mind up on what yet, give us a go but please only go into the force if you're interested in us.

Also it might be worth speaking with you local BTP post to see if you can organise an attachment with them or an observation shift to get a feel for things before applying, plus it'll go down alot better on your interview if you've put the effort in.

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Glassy

Joining BTP as a long game plan to transfer out is not a good idea. If you want to join a home office force then do so, or apply to the Met and then transfer to a regional. BTP is a specialist force that provides policing to a very different environment. It would not go down well that you have only joined as a route to HO, and could you really stand there in your interview and presentation saying that you understand what it is BTP do and that you want to join them because of that? Think about the principles of Policing.

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Futures

I'll hold my hands up - I realised about a year in that BTP wasn't for me. I'm now almost 3 years down the line and I've got a transferee interview coming up shortly. 

If you're not 100% sure about BTP then I'd suggest not applying and going straight to home office. 2 years as a probationer is a long time and if you don't enjoy it or believe in the work you're doing it's going to feel even longer. 

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Klaus
Joining BTP as a long game plan to transfer out is not a good idea. If you want to join a home office force then do so, or apply to the Met and then transfer to a regional. BTP is a specialist force that provides policing to a very different environment. It would not go down well that you have only joined as a route to HO, and could you really stand there in your interview and presentation saying that you understand what it is BTP do and that you want to join them because of that? Think about the principles of Policing.

However, the same mentality would go down equally badly in the met so that's not really a better option. Additionally, to join the met you have to have lived in London for 3 years so that rules out people from the rest of the country now.

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HackeyTW
2 hours ago, Futures said:

I'll hold my hands up - I realised about a year in that BTP wasn't for me. I'm now almost 3 years down the line and I've got a transferee interview coming up shortly. 

If you're not 100% sure about BTP then I'd suggest not applying and going straight to home office. 2 years as a probationer is a long time and if you don't enjoy it or believe in the work you're doing it's going to feel even longer. 

I completely agree with this, I have been in BTP for almost two and half years and I knew within 6 months that it wasnt for me. I join Surrey Police in 3 weeks.

Best of luck with your application

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Toms

Go in with an open mind (you might really enjoy it and there is quite alot of opportunities if you are looking at London that you will struggle to get in alot of home office forces) but I don't necessarily agree with the comments about not thinking about transferring, at the end of the day you have to think of your own career progression. Is there more opportunities to investigate serious offences in a home office CID because one day you want to be an SIO then I don't think there is an issue in joining BTP in uniform for a couple of years and then transferring to where the opportunities are. I think that transferring between forces should be a lot more fluid and a lot easier. The training is the same, the jobs pretty much the same (assaults are assaults whether its on staff or its a domestic) its just the location or the cap badge that is different.

 

Unless you haven't guessed I transferred out of BTP after a number of years in but it was more for location and personal reasons as I enjoyed working for them as an organisation. I found it painless and my new force have accepted all my previous job quals which is how it should be

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Hyphen

I was BTP for just over 5 years. It is very hard to describe but it is very much the same and different to HO forces. The jobs are the same, I mainly dealt with assaults, public order jobs, criminal damage, a lot of thefts and everything in between as well as dealing with the specialist railway side of things. It is a unique role in some ways. There are a lot of opportunities in London in regards to BTP and plenty to be doing. I worked outside of London and in some ways it was a good learning curve as there weren't a lot of cops or supervision around which meant learning quickly and working independently.

Also from my experience if you want to develop there are plenty of courses on offer. Not long out of probation I had my response driving, TASER, PSU, Family Liaision officer and did a Tutor course.

The other thing I found is that when investigating your crimes and dealing with victims/witnesses there was a lot more time to do things and the lower level crimes were investigated a lot more thoroughly.

Howerver, I reached a point after those 5 years where I had gone as far as I could without moving away which I wasn't prepared to for personal reasons. Due to that I applied to my local HO force and transferred directly over. There was no hassle being from BTP, did the same interview and there was no further probation period.

I think it's something to weigh up, I would strongly recommend doing some research with your local BTP office and speaking frankly to the officers in the sorrounding areas. The strange thing with BTP is it can vary by post how things are done and ultimately how much you would enjoy the job.

In terms of going in to BTP to transfer out, you certainly won't be the first and definitely won't be the last. I have met many people who have openly said that rightly or wrongly and moved on to HO forces.

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sc117

I think you should research more into BTP before making a decision. Go to the local BTP police station and speak to current BTP officers to get an insight into the work we do or see if you can arrange a specials shift with BTP. If you are applying to BTP you should at least be thinking about giving it a chance rather than to intend to use it as a stepping stone to move on.

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Cathedral Bobby
1 minute ago, sc117 said:

I think you should research more into BTP before making a decision. Go to the local BTP police station and speak to current BTP officers to get an insight into the work we do or see if you can arrange a specials shift with BTP. If you are applying to BTP you should at least be thinking about giving it a chance rather than to intend to use it as a stepping stone to move on.

Apply to the force you want to serve with and not a force you want to use as a stepping stone. We are all different and want different things. BTP IS NOT A SECOND RATE SERVICE, EASIER FORCE TO JOIN TO MOVE ON FROM. IT IS A PROFESSIONAL FORCE OF DEDICATED OFFICERS WHO DO A MAGNIFICENT JOB. THIS SHOULD NEVER BE ABOUT THE FORCE BUT ABOUT YOU AS AN INDIVIDUAL AND WHAT YOU ULTIMATELY WANT

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Hyphen
5 hours ago, Cathedral Bobby said:

Apply to the force you want to serve with and not a force you want to use as a stepping stone. We are all different and want different things. BTP IS NOT A SECOND RATE SERVICE, EASIER FORCE TO JOIN TO MOVE ON FROM. IT IS A PROFESSIONAL FORCE OF DEDICATED OFFICERS WHO DO A MAGNIFICENT JOB. THIS SHOULD NEVER BE ABOUT THE FORCE BUT ABOUT YOU AS AN INDIVIDUAL AND WHAT YOU ULTIMATELY WANT

Totally agree with the above. My post certainly wasn't about suggesting BTP was second rate or a force to be used or anything like that.

To be totally truthful the recruitment process for BTP was a lot harder than for a HO force.

Certainly in terms of my own career development I felt I had to move on. I think a lot of people reach that point particularly outside London.

I do have to agree though, it's not great to apply to BTP with the mindset from day 1 of moving on. It isn't good for your own development nor for the organisation.

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Policey_Man
On ‎17‎/‎08‎/‎2017 at 17:53, Klaus said:


However, the same mentality would go down equally badly in the met so that's not really a better option. Additionally, to join the met you have to have lived in London for 3 years so that rules out people from the rest of the country now.

I'd disagree with that. Half of everyone in the Met joined because it was the only force open and there are loads of people there that openly admit they joined with the intention of 'going home' eventually.

I think it's accepted in London.

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Policey_Man
On ‎17‎/‎08‎/‎2017 at 19:23, HackeyTW said:

I completely agree with this, I have been in BTP for almost two and half years and I knew within 6 months that it wasnt for me. I join Surrey Police in 3 weeks.

Best of luck with your application

In which case, why does your signature say Met Police?

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Policey_Man

To the OP: I agree with a lot of what has been said above. The best thing to do would be to apply to the place you want to work. I accept that that doesn't always work out and some forces aren't recruiting student officers, so if BTP are in your area, I understand the draw to them. But be mindful that they could post you at the other end of the country, so don't make this purely about one thing, such as location.

There are obviously differences between BTP and home office forces, but at the end of the day, the job on the street ,or on the station as it maybe, is very similar. It is very different in other ways, because policies, procedures and computer systems can make the job seem massively different, even when you compare Home Office force to Home Office force.

You can only do what is right for you, but do make sure that you make an informed decision. The suggestion for doing a ride-along or whatever is a great idea and I suspect it will be easier to arrange given that you're already a Special Constable. I certainly think that the application process to get into BTP is much more rigorous and challenging than a lot of HO forces.

Best of luck and let us know what you decide to do.

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