DEVON & Cornwall Police is branching out into international policing, signing a new twinning agreement with colleagues in the Royal Gibraltar Police.

Acting Chief Constable Jim Colwell has visited the overseas territory this week to sign a memorandum of understanding with Royal Gibraltar Police Commissioner Richard Ullger and His Excellency the Governor, Lieutenant General Sir Ben Bathurst.

The agreement aims to create a supportive relationship between the two forces, who will share expertise, experience and provide each other with training opportunities and secondments.

Acting Chief Constable Jim Colwell with Royal Gibraltar Police Commissioner Richard Ullger ( )

Plans for the memorandum of understanding began back in 2019 and are supported by both the Home Office and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

The Royal Gibraltar Police is the oldest Commonwealth police force outside the UK, formed in 1830.

There are currently 248 police officers in the force, supported by a small number of police staff who are directly employed by the Gibraltar Government.

Acting Chief Constable Jim Collwell said: “It is a pleasure to be here in Gibraltar to join forces with the Royal Gibraltar Police.

“As a larger force, the agreement will predominantly centre on us supporting our colleagues in the Royal Gibraltar Police, who face the challenges of operating in a complex policing environment with significantly smaller police resources and no near British Overseas Territory neighbours to call upon for support.

“Our support will include training, secondments, peer to peer support and signposting to national best practice.

“Criminality has no borders, so establishing international relations is important to sharing information and expertise to keep all of our communities and borders safe and secure.”

Royal Gibraltar Police Commissioner of Police, Richard Ullger, said: “This will be hugely beneficial to the Royal Gibraltar Police, as we will be able to reach out to a force which is much larger than us and which has more subject matter experts in a variety of policing fields.

“The agreement will allow us to reap benefits in learning, training and experience, which in turn will help us to keep Gibraltar a safe place for everyone who lives and works here.”