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Modules:Public order
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Planning and deployment

Public order

See also the guidance on public order tactical options and communication. Disorder model This explains the nature of disorder, and may assist in managing policing operations, events and incidents where there is a risk of disorder or a potential for disorder to occur or further escalate. Tension or disorder may be present in every community and social grouping. Its […]


Public order

The public order command structure is based on the gold, silver, bronze and PSU commander roles. For some operations there may also be a requirement for a sub bronze commander role. Those who have been given authority through their role for a specific operation or incident carry out the command role. Commanders must be trained, accredited and operationally competent. Their role is to […]

Reference material

Public order

Public order APP contains references to the following. Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 Appleby v UK App No. (2003) 37 EHRR 783 (not hyperlinked) Austin v United Kingdom [2012] ECHR 459 (not hyperlinked) British Transport Police Bukta and Others v Hungary (2007) (App. No. 25691/04) 51 EHRR 25 (not hyperlinked) Cabinet Office (2009) […]

Public order

Legislation, command, planning and deployment, tactical options, football.

Last modified: April 2021

Policing football

Public order

Policing football APP is aimed at those involved in planning and commanding football events. It provides a framework to ensure a consistent approach at national, regional and local levels. It should also be considered in line with Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Principles. Partnership, cooperation and engagement Effective football policing is underpinned by: partnership and cooperation between […]

Public order index

Core principles and legislation 1 Core principles 2 Legal framework 2.1 The right to peaceful assembly (basics: the right to protest) 2.1.1 Negative duty 2.1.2 Positive duty 2.2 Starting point for policing public protest: the presumption in favour of peaceful assembly 2.2.1 Organisers’ intentions 2.3 Restricting the right to peaceful protest 2.4 Principle of proportionality […]

Tactical options

Public order

Commanders have a number of options available for inclusion in their tactical or deployment plans. Commanders should mix and match options and adapt them, depending on the circumstances and resource availability, in order to keep the peace and (where applicable) facilitate protest. They should take a flexible approach to the options they use, and consider the […]

Core principles and legislation

Public order

Six core principles apply to public order policing operations. All legal references are to the law in England and Wales, unless otherwise stated. Readers should ensure that they are aware of the law in force in their jurisdiction when applying this guidance. Core principles The following core principles should be read in conjunction with  command and command considerations […]

Legislative variations for Northern Ireland

Public order

The following content presents legislative variations for Northern Ireland. Legal framework The police have statutory powers and duties in relation to the policing of public processions, related protests and open-air public meetings, including those set out in the: Public Processions (Northern Ireland) Act 1998 Public Order (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern […]


Public order

Developing plans to communicate with the public, directly or indirectly, is an essential element of modern public order policing. Forces should have community engagement plans that are tailored to suit the diverse nature of their communities. Routine neighbourhood policing that includes plans to liaise with the local media, key internal/external stakeholders and directly with the public will […]