New uniform is cold comfort for police

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The Independent Online

The thin blue line has been a shade bluer recently. Police officers are finding their new national uniform, which includes a fleece to replace the traditional pullover, has a flaw – it does not keep out the cold.

The thin blue line has been a shade bluer recently. Police officers are finding their new national uniform, which includes a fleece to replace the traditional pullover, has a flaw – it does not keep out the cold.

The uniform is intended to promote a consistent appearance for officers across the country but some forces have already dropped it.

Plunging temperatures have led to a flood of complaints about the clothes, introduced only five months ago. Paul Tonks, the chairman of the West Midlands Police Federation, called the uniform garbage. "We have just gone through an extremely cold spell and officers have been bloody freezing. Other forces have dropped it like a hot potato, making a mockery of the idea of a national uniform."

The Association of Chief Police Officers, which designed the uniform, said it had been tested in all weather conditions in the north and south of Britain.