?More than 2,000 jobs including 1,050 police officers will be axed by West Midlands Police over the next four years, it was revealed today.
The move, announced by Chief Constable Chris Sims, means 12 per cent of uniformed officers are set to leave the force over the next four years.
He said the force will need to save £123 million as a result of Government cuts due to be announced on October 20.
The first wave of job cuts will come next year with 400 officers and 400 staff posts set to be axed. Serving police officers cannot be made redundant and so the force will invoke a policy to forcibly retire any officer with more than 30 years of service.
The rest of the cuts will come by continuing a recruitment freeze on new officers and offering civilian staff redundancy.
Mr Sims said: I never expected to be doing this but we need to create a budget that balances.
"This is new territory for us all. We are determined to do everything we can to protect the service and deliver protection to the people of the West Midlands in the way that they expect but we will have to remodel to cope with 2,250 fewer people."
The force had already set up a review of its services, dubbed Programme Paragon, in a bid to save £50m over four years.
Mr Sims had previously said it was possible the force's 13,400 staff could be reduced by 1,000. Today's announcement shows the extent of the 25 per cent cuts expected to be imposed by the Government.