DCC Pippa Mills named preferred candidate for West Mercia Police chief constable

Essex Police Deputy Chief Constable Pippa Mills has been named as the preferred candidate for chief constable of West Mercia Police.

Jun 30, 2021
By Tony Thompson
Deputy Chief Constable Pippa Mills. Picture: Essex Police.

She will take over from current chief constable Anthony Bangham, who will be retiring in September after reaching 30 years’ service .

West Mercia police and crime commissioner John Campion said Ms Mills will bring “a wealth of experience” to the post. He said his nomination will now be “offered for confirmation” to the West Mercia police and crime panel on July 13 after which a start date will be agreed.

Mr Campion said: “After undergoing a thorough process, I am delighted to have chosen Pippa Mills to be my preferred candidate for the new chief constable of West Mercia Police. She will bring with her a wealth of previous experience from her service in Essex and the Metropolitan Police.

“As commissioner I am committed to backing West Mercia Police with the resources it needs, and that includes exceptional leadership. I am grateful to Anthony for his services to policing and for leading the force for the past five years. As he passes the legacy on, I look forward to working with Pippa as West Mercia Police moves into its next chapter. I will ensure that it makes the best use of the additional investment I have made in policing to tackle crime effectively and keep our communities safe.”

Ms Mills said: “I am delighted to have been selected as the preferred candidate to be the next chief constable. I am committed to protecting people from harm, to delivering an excellent service to all communities and to making sure that West Mercia officers and staff of all ranks and grades are visible and accessible to those who need us.

“My aim is to put the people of Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, Worcestershire and Herefordshire first. I will also make sure that everyone at West Mercia feels proud to be part of the policing family, and proud to serve every community across our three counties.”

Ms Mills was appointed deputy chief constable of Essex Police in March 2019 and has overseen the growth of the force through the national Police Uplift programme and, prior to that, locally-funded growth, which has brought hundreds of extra officers, members of staff and volunteers to the force.

In addition to her responsibilities overseeing the operation of the Local Policing, Criminal Justice and Public Protection, Serious Crime and Operational Policing commands, alongside strategic change and human resources, learning and development and other critical capabilities, Ms Mills also led the initial response to the discovery of 39 men, women and children inside a lorry trailer in Essex in October 2019. She is also the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for police dogs.

Prior to her current role as deputy chief constable, Ms Mills was the Essex Police assistant chief constable overseeing criminal justice, operational policing and contact management. She transferred to Essex Police in May 2017 having begun her career with the Metropolitan Police Service.

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