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Police pay to rise by 2.5% in 2020-21

The Government has announced a 2.5% increase in police officer pay for 2020-21, matching the rise awarded last year.

The Home Office has confirmed that police officer pay will be going up by 2.5% in 2020-21, in line with recommendations by the Police Remuneration Review Body (PRRB). The change will take effect in England and Wales from 1 September 2020.

This increase is in line with the rise announced last year.

Metfriendly produces an annual guide giving a full rundown of the pay increases for officers at all ranks.

What’s changing?

The big headline is that police officers at all ranks and pay points will receive a consolidated increase in pay of 2.5%. The dog handlers’ allowance will go up by the same amount, as will the London weighting.

It was also confirmed that the maximum rate of London allowance will increase by £1,000 to £5,338 a year for officers who were appointed on or after 1 September 1994, and are not receiving replacement allowance.

The PRRB’s report recognises the need for greater flexibility by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) in the payment of the London allowance to maintain the ratio of pay between officers in London and those in other forces. It therefore supports increased flexibility in this area by the MPS moving forward, with an uprating of this allowance in line with police pay supporting this goal.

Other key announcements included the removal of the lowest point on the sergeants’ pay scale.

This decision reflects the small difference in pay between the lowest level of sergeants’ remuneration and that of the top scale for constables. Given the need to create an additional 2,000 sergeant posts to support workforce uplift in the coming years, the removal of the lowest point on the sergeants’ pay scale helps to ensure a greater incentive for recruitment and officers to seek promotion.

Here’s how the increase in police pay stacks up against changes for other public sector workers:



Pay increase




Dentists and doctors



Police, prison officers and National Crime Agency staff

England and Wales


Armed forces



Members of the judiciary and senior civil servants




A ‘step in the right direction’

The Police Federation of England and Wales (PFEW) welcomed the 2.5% pay increase for police officers as “a step in the right direction”, even though it’s less than the body asked for. PFEW and the Police Superintendents’ Association recommended a pay uplift of 5% across all ranks.

John Apter, PFEW national chair, said: “This is not as much as we asked for – but it is more than many of our colleagues expected.  And it is positive to see the Government abiding by proper process and accepting all the recommendations of the PRRB.”

Mr Apter added that police officers “absolutely” deserve more than a 2.5% pay rise and urged the Government to “go further to pay officers fairly for the unique and dangerous job they do”.

The confirmed uplift equates to a pensionable salary increase of approximately £1,100 a year for a constable, taking into account salary plus allowances.

This welcome news of an increase in pay follows the publication of the MPS’ annual attitude survey, which highlighted a strong level of engagement among serving officers, supported by ongoing investment by the Home Office into improving officer wellbeing.

That said, while 26% of respondents answered positively to the statement ‘I feel my pay is reasonable considering my responsibilities’ – up from 16% in the previous year – the MPS recognised the majority of officers still feel their level of pay and package of benefits are not reasonable or satisfactory given growing pressures on officer workloads.

To find out the pay scales by rank and pay point in 2020/21, click below to view our guide.



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