The Metropolitan Police force hopes to roll out two or three more off-site police training centres in conjunction with London businesses after joining forces with Sainsbury’s this week.
The new training centre, directly on top of Sainsbury’s Barkingside store, will train up to 30 uniformed Met Police recruits at a time.
The partnership, which came about through a former police officer who now works for Sainsbury’s, sees the retailer donating what was redundant space for free, although the Met will cover utility costs.
Met Police HR director Martin Tiplady told Personnel Today: “Part of our training programme is about working with the community, and there is no better place to do that than in the community itself.
“I hope that we will be able to open two or three more training centres with businesses. It’s not just about looking for cheap space, but involving local people in what we do.”
Justin King, Sainsbury’s chief executive, confirmed that the initiative could be rolled out to other Sainsbury’s stores across the country.
“This initiative is mutually beneficial in that it provides the Met Police with a free training facility in a prime location in Barkingside, and also gives Sainsbury’s colleagues, customers and the local community the reassuring presence of police officers in the final stages of their training,” he added.