The British Transport Police (BTP) has recruited record numbers of staff this year, but does not have enough money to pay for uniforms, equipment or training, senior managers have warned.
Alex Robertson, chairman of the BTP Federation, said the force is “being starved of capital funding”.
He told the federation’s annual conference that the BTP needs £15.5m for its capital programme next year, but that it was only being offered £5.4m by the government.
“How can the railways become a safer place without spending money?” Robertson said. “How can we ask officers to spend time investigating a crime without paying them for the hours worked?”
On the plus side, Robertson said the BTP had recrutied 150 new staff this year alone. But, he added: “We do not appear to have the money to pay for uniforms, equipment or the training to put them out on the beat.”
Responding to Robertson’s comments, transport minister Tony McNulty advised delegates to “watch this space”. He said the government was very grateful for the “great work” the BTP has done to improve security.