States of Guernsey Police Service

States of Guernsey Police Service
Common name Guernsey Police
Abbreviation GYPD

Guernsey Police Logo (as at 2016)
Agency overview
Formed 1915
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* Police area of Guernsey, Alderney, Sark, Herm, GBG
Map of States of Guernsey Police Service's jurisdiction.
Size 78 km²
Population Approx 67,500
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Hospital Lane, St Peter Port
Sworn members 186
Agency executive Patrick Rice, Chief Officer
Stations 1
* Police area agency: Prescribed geographic area in the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The States of Guernsey Police Service, known generally as the Guernsey Police, is the Police service for the Bailiwick of Guernsey, a jurisdictional sub-group of Crown Dependencies within the Channel Islands.

The Service's enforcement jurisdiction extends across the entire Bailiwick and encompasses the Islands of Guernsey, Alderney, Herm, and Sark.


In common with many communities, a historical development of parish constables formed the system of law enforcement for many centuries. In the nineteenth century the people of Guernsey complained that this system was inadequate for a growing population, and a professional police force was demanded. The parish constables retained their historic role, but from 1853 uniformed 'Assistant Constables' were appointed. Initially there were four of them, with a uniform hat and belt worn over their civilian clothing. They provided full-time policing, under the authority of the elected parish constables.[1] The current police force was formed following approval by the States of Deliberation in March 1915, consisting of an inspector, two sergeants, two corporals and eleven constables. During the five year German occupation of the Channel Islands the Police had a difficult time whilst working alongside the German military police and the Feldgendarmerie (Field Police). In 1945 the force resumed its normal role and is now considerably expanded, as of 2008 it had 169 officers supported by 37 civilian staff.

Structure and ranks

The force is headed by a Chief Officer (CO), with a Deputy Chief Officer (DCO) as second in command and a Superintendent as third in command. The current Chief Officer of the Guernsey Police is Patrick Rice. The current Deputy Chief Officer is Nigel Taylor and the current Superintendent is Ruari Hardy. Each of the four branches within the Guernsey Police is headed by a Chief Inspector; the branches are Uniformed Operations, Crime Services, Corporate Services and Specialist Services. Significant units within these four divisions include the commercial fraud department, the explosive ordinance disposal unit and the Police dog section.

Special Constables

Guernsey Police has a system of special constables, with three distinct types of volunteer officer, known as "A", "B", or "C" division of the special constabulary. B division special constables are fully trained to support their full-time colleagues in all aspects of policing. C division special constables carry out the duties of a traffic warden, but have certain police powers in respect of traffic control. A division special constables are full-time employees of third party agencies who are granted limited police powers within their work place, to provide a first response whilst professional police officers are travelling to an incident; for example, a number of hospital porters are sworn as A division special constables to provide an enhanced level of hospital security.[2]


From March 2015, emergency calls for all Emergency Services in Guernsey have been routed through the Joint Emergency Services Control Centre (JESCC), linking Police, Fire, Ambulance and Coastguard services.[3]


Sign at police headquarters, St. Peter Port


  1. The full history of this period is available online as a PDF document.
  2. Details on the official police website.
  3. "Joint emergency services control centre goes live". Guernsey Press. 18 March 2015.
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