A PROPOSED system to offer direct entry to high ranks in the police to people from outside the force has been criticised by the Lancashire Police Federation.

The system would mean that new starters would be able to bypass the compulsory two years of training ‘on the beat’.

New recruits would be allowed to fast track to inspector level within three years and ‘outsiders’ could join as superintendents with just 15 months’ training.

The chief constable post would also be opened up to senior officers from other countries such as Canada, the USA, Australia and New Zealand.

Rachel Baines, Lancashire Police Federation chairman, said: “Our view is that there should be no direct entry at all for any rank.

“It is vital that police leaders have operational experience otherwise I fear they will not earn the respect of their junior colleagues and put the public at risk.

“These officers make operational decisions and so it is vital they have that experience.”