Home Secretary Priti Patel has confirmed the appointment of Sir Mark Rowley to lead the UK’s largest police force.
Sir Mark was formally appointed by Her Majesty the Queen following a recommendation from the Home Secretary, after a highly competitive recruitment process.
At a time when the government is investing record sums into policing, including supporting the recruitment of 20,000 additional police officers across England and Wales, the new Commissioner will need to focus on getting the basics right, restoring confidence in policing, delivering on the Beating Crime Plan and making the capital’s streets safer.
Sir Mark Peter Rowley QPM was Chief Constable of Surrey Police for four years (2008 to 2011) before joining the Metropolitan Police Service in 2011. Sir Mark was a former Assistant Commissioner for Specialist Crime and Operations of the Metropolitan Police Service (2011 to 2014), and then National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Counter-Terrorism (2014 to 2018). He was knighted in 2018 for his exceptional contribution to national security and national leadership at a time of unprecedented threat.
Sir Mark Rowley’s career in policing spans over 30 years, during which time he has transformed national security and policing. As Chief Constable, he lifted the public confidence levels in Surrey to the highest in the country. After joining the Metropolitan Police Service, Sir Mark transformed the approach to UK counter-terrorism and policing gangs, increasing community engagement and workforce diversity, leading the police response to the London terror attacks of 2017 and reducing shootings and murders in London to an all-time low. He also led reform in policing of public order, organised crime and fraud, launching the 200-strong Op Falcon team to combat the growth of online fraud and cybercrime.
Since leaving policing in 2018 he has worked in specialist security projects and on technology/data-led transformation with ‘start-ups’ and the world’s largest professional services company. He has focused on: countering extremism and racism, online safety, institutional integrity, and illicit finance.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said:
Sir Mark Rowley is a distinguished and exceptionally experienced police officer, having served the people of the West Midlands and Surrey before guiding the capital through some of its most challenging moments in the wake of the 2017 terror attacks, as the Met’s then head of counter-terrorism.
He now takes on one of the most important and demanding jobs in policing, leading the country’s largest force at a time when public trust in the Metropolitan Police has been severely undermined by a number of significant failings. Rebuilding public trust and delivering on crime reduction must be his priority.
This will be a challenging period, but with a focus on tackling neighbourhood crime and delivering the basics of policing, Sir Mark is committed to tackling the significant challenges confronting the force and to making London’s streets safer by driving down crime and bringing more criminals to justice.
As the largest police force in the country, we have supported the Met to recruit 2,599 extra police officers and increased their annual policing budget to £3.24 billion in 2022 to 2023. I look forward to working closely with Sir Mark to ensure this investment drives essential change to ensure the force delivers for the people of London.
Responding to his appointment, Sir Mark Rowley said:
I feel deeply honoured to be appointed to be the next Metropolitan Police Commissioner. Our mission is to lead the renewal of policing by consent which has been so heavily dented in recent years as trust and confidence have fallen.
I am grateful that the Home Secretary and Mayor are both determined to support the urgent reforms we need to deliver successful community crimefighting in today’s fast-moving world. These reforms include our use of technology and data, our culture and our policing approach. We will fight crime with communities – not unilaterally dispense tactics.
I also know that the majority of officers and staff retain an extraordinary sense of vocation and determination and want us to do better. It is my job to help them do that, whilst also being ruthless in removing those who are corrupting our integrity.
We will deliver more trust, less crime and high standards for London and beyond and we will work with London’s diverse communities as we together renew the uniquely British invention of ‘policing by consent’.
Sir Mark was knighted by HM the Queen in the 2018 Birthday Honours list for his “exceptional contribution to national security at a time of unprecedented threat and personally providing reassuring national leadership through the attacks of 2017”.
The date of Sir Mark’s first day in the role will be confirmed in due course.