The Interim Chief Executive of the Nottinghamshire Police Authority resigned in December, following a very public criticism of the force by a local Member of Parliament. The resignation by David Wilcock – only two months into a six month stint in the position – came as Bassetlaw MP John Mann decried the “organisational malaise” in the force during Prime Minister’s Questions. Mann complained that out of a total of 2380 police in the division in his district, only 14 had been on duty on a Friday night. He asked for Gordon Brown to “directly and swiftly” intervene in the authority.
The news was especially unwelcome as it distracted from a police press release only a day before which lauded a drop in crime across Nottinghamshire. Between April and November 2009, burglary and robbery in particular fell, as did the number of cars being stolen or broken into. At the same time, the force had retained control over a protest at Radcliffe-on-Soar power station and came out with some credit following clashes between the English Defence League and Unite Against Fascism in the city centre. Earlier in the year, the force had faced criticism for rising levels of violent crime.
However, Wilcock’s resignation letter – leaked to the Nottingham Evening Post – purportedly complained of an organisation “with no inherent capacity to support self improvement”, arguing that “The current situation has not happened overnight and seems to have accumulated without action over a period of time without being tackled.”