Frequently asked questions

How long does the recruitment process take?
Your application will go through several stages, see the application process page.  For most people the process takes between three and six months.


Is there a minimum or maximum age limit for people to apply?
You must be 18 years old to apply to become a Detention Officer. There is no upper age limit.


What qualifications will I need?
No formal qualifications are required to apply, but during the application process you will need to demonstrate that you have the right skills and experience to be a good Detention Officer.


Do I need to be a British citizen to apply?
You need to be a British citizen or a citizen of a country that is a member of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, or a Commonwealth citizen or foreign national who is resident in the UK and free from restrictions. You should be aware that it is not always possible to carry out adequate vetting checks on persons who have not been resident within the UK for the last three years. Therefore, where this applies, applicants may be refused on the grounds that it was not possible to vet them to the appropriate standard.


Do I need a driving license and access to a vehicle to apply?
No. However, whilst you will be assigned to a base custody suite, from time to time there is a requirement to work at other suites throughout the Force area. In addition you will be working a 24x7 shift pattern and so public transport is not always a reliable form of transport, so it is desirable that you have access to your own vehicle and are prepared to use it for business purposes.


What is the salary?
The salary starts at £21,135 plus 20% shift allowance and weekend enhancements.
(The shift allowance and weekend enhancements apply once training has been completed)


What are the working hours?
Detention Officers work the FSDR shift pattern, which is six days on, four days off. This is made up of two early shifts, two late shifts and two night shifts followed by four days off.


Is the job available for part-time working or job share?
Yes, both part-time working and job share are available.


What does the training involve?
Detention Officers undergo a six week initial training programme at the Force Learning & Development Centre at Carr Gate, Wakefield and at other sites across West Yorkshire.  The course covers the legislative side of custody, first aid, officer safety training, IT & biometric data capture (fingerprints, DNA, drug testing).


Do I have to undergo a medical during the recruitment process?
Yes. If you are successful at the interview stage you will be required to undergo a medical assessment. Details of the medical standards can be found here:


Where will I be based?
Successful applicants will be based at one of the five operational custody suites, depending on which site currently has a vacancy.

  • Bradford
  • Halifax
  • Huddersfield
  • Leeds
  • Wakefield
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