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Starting in Garnerville soon? Read this:

  • #1
    Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Help & Feedback Category Moderators Posts: 8,227 mod Shield


    So you've just got a call (or a letter) from PSNI Recruitment offering you a place in the Student Officer Training Program.

    Well done, and welcome to the club.

    At the request of many people, here are some hints and tips that could very well help you survive your 4-week residential stay in Hotel Garnerville from Day 1.

    Your first day will most likely be Sunday. This is a 12-hour day that starts at about 10am. They do feed you but I would advise you bring snacks like fruit, cuppa soups, pot noodles and the like. They have vending machines on-site, but these just sell chocolate, crisps and fizzy drinks.

    The following 2 or 3 days are also 12-hour days. Be prepared to be whisked away to a secret location for this duration to get everyone acquainted with each other, and a bit of fun here and there too.

    You are watched closely from the minute you arrive at Garnerville, on and off duty. Do not get involved with any parties, drinking to excess or get caught with members of the opposite sex in your room/other way about. This is all very much frowned upon by the orderly. Do not express ANY (even slightly) controversial opinions, ever, even if it is not actually what you believe. Be a middle of the road, reasonable liberal, or in other words, stay grey. Work hard, and pay attention in class. Again, this will be noticed.

    Show respect for the wider force, and the RUC, as ALL your instructors will have been in it. Stories of wet behind the ears, gobby recruits, slagging off the RUC and their efforts and sacrifices WILL get out into the wider force, and it will not do you any favours (to say the least).

    The style of teaching involves LOTS of group activities/presentations and all round class participation, so get involved. It is embarrassing to sit in a class when the instructor asks for a volunteer to stand up in front of the class and 15 people who want to be Police Officers have not got the guts to do so, so put yourself forward, provided you know what you are doing.

    Get organised. You are required to be where you have to be 5 minutes before the scheduled time. Plan ahead so you are in the right gear with the right kit. If you smoke, the smoker's shack in a good place to meet people, not just recruits, but those other courses who you can get to know, and that cannot do you any harm.

    Be efficient. Do not be one of the whining loudmouths that sits around in the rec room half the night gossiping, and then complains about how busy they are and that they never have any time. Finish class, do your kit, do your studying and there will be plenty of time to relax after.

    Join the Police Federation. It's about £15 a month. The benefits are too many to list here.

    Sign up for BUPA through the Federation, unless you have your own health insurance already. You will need it when you get injured (and you WILL get injured), and some unfortunately get injured in Garnerville.

    Keep your room clean. You will be in a room with 1 other person. The rooms are tiny and old. You have a sink, 2 bunk beds and built-in wardrobes/shelves with just 1 desk. Sometimes there's even a chair in your room. Modern - they ain't.

    Show parades: You WILL get a show parade. It's basically dressing up in your best uniform and Number 1 boots for something trivial. This happens first thing in the morning or last thing at night, to be inspected by your Drill Instructor, the Foundation Inspectors or the Chief. Play the game and keep your mouth shut. We all got them for something trivial like a non-existant fleck of dust on your trousers. Don't turn into Ghandi about it. Sometimes, they just want to see how far they can push you, or in other words, if you break easy.

    Take the following with you:

    A good ironing cloth, i.e. a piece of good quality linen/cotton sheet, or tea towel, as pressing uniforms is something you will do a lot of and they cannot be touched directly by an iron. A good ironing board is useful, saves you queuing up to use one of the few provided.

    A good quality heavy steam iron

    A water spray bottle for ironing

    A few cans of spray starch for the shirts, espepcially for when the short sleeves come in at the end of March.

    A kettle for making tea/coffee in your room if you like. Mugs & spoons too. You can buy milk for the tea in the canteen.

    You are provided with 2 identical pairs of boots. One pair will become your parade boots (Number 1's) which you will spend a lot of time bulling, and the other will be your normal boots (Number 2's). Bring standard KIWI boot polish and 2 new brushes. NO OTHER BRANDS. Parade Gloss does the job, but it's quite greasy and makes bulling that much harder. There is some debate on the matter because Parade Gloss is great for when the bull is actually on the boot, but bull is made up of layers and layers of dried polish.

    A good quality "Bulling" cloth, namely the best duster you can get, not a TESCOS value one. These will just leave scratches on your bulled boots. If you can, get your hands on a Selvyt cloth, also known as a Jewellers cloth. They are perfect for bulling.

    Get a pair of women's stockings/tights and roll them into a ball. They are EXCELLENT for shining up your normal (Number 2) boots after they have been polished, although they only work after a good amount of polish has been built up on them after a couple of weeks. Just buff them off with it and they will GLEAM.

    Get a silicon shoe shine pad, use it after the above and your normal (Number 2) boots will be great. DO NOT USE THIS ON YOUR NUMBER 1 BOOTS!!!

    2 rolls of brown parcel tape for tacking down uniforms.

    Good quality wooden clothes hangers. Get 2 that allow you to hang trousers upside down, with a big clamp on the top instead of little clips.

    2 small padlocks.

    A pen knife. It's just so handy.

    Writing pads and highlighter pens, along with a good few black pens. We only write in black pen in our notebooks. Bring spares just in case.

    You will have to clean your room, so take some stuff to do it, i.e. a few J cloths, some Cif, etc. for the sink, and some Mr Sheen, etc. for the rest.

    Buy some good quality black socks. The ones from Millets are the black version of standard Army issue double soled socks. They are about £4 or £5 a pair, but if you can afford them they are worth the money for the real world as well as Garnerville. They might be called "Commando" socks in the shops. Army surplus stores may have them too, as the Services now issue Army/Navy/RAF with the same black sock, rather than different colours. These are a heavy sock but they prevent blistering when your new boots are being broken in.

    You get your uniform on the day you start, which is always Sunday. In case your uniform isn't there, bring suits, white shirts, ties and black shoes to get you through 1 full week without uniform. Ladies, bring the equivalent.

    There are laundry facilities on-site for you to wash your stuff. All uniform item are machine-washable. Hurrah!

    Take a plain black trouser belt with you if you have one, as sometimes the stores run out and they stop your trousers falling off!

    Ethan321 suggested: Optional suit covers/carriers. Reason: "When taking uniforms (especialy if ironed) to and from your car you may not want your neighbours seeing what you are carrying."

    Toiletries, towels, etc..

    Flip flops for the showers.

    Washing powder for doing your laundry. The handiest man-proof powder is persil tablets. Stick 2 in a net and throw it into the drum. Sorted.

    Bedding. One single pillowcase. One single sheet. One single duvet cover. You can use the ones provided if you wish, but even though they are cleaned, they still have questionable stains on them that don't come out. I'll leave that one alone. More and more people are even bringing their own duvet for hygeine. Just leave it all in your car until the day is over. You are then free to go and collect it when the day is done, and bring it all up to your room.

    Sewing kit, some black and white thread and a few needles will do for emergencies.

    An alarm clock - most mobile phones have one built-in; check yours works.

    If you want, a radio/CD player. Some people are bringing xbox's, playstations, etc these days, but they can be a bit of a distraction when the pressure starts to mount. If you decide to bring a TV with a Freeview box, then you will need a TV licence. When room inspections come around, they check for TV's, but they can't if you've locked it away in your locker! ;)

    Finally, please bring a sense of humour! You will really need if for those hot summer afternoons, or cold winter mornings, running around that parade square, double time of course!


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Comments



  • Excellent post, cheers!

    Martin.




  • great post psni. very helpful. lots of detail.


    thanks




  • Just one extra thing that is optional, although i got a couple today myself, is suit covers/carriers. I bought 2 for £10.
    When taking uniforms (especialy if ironed) to and from your car you may not want your neighbours seeing what you are carrying. ;)




  • Thanks PSNI.
    Can I ask if you could supply info, when you get a chance, on what happens post 4 week residential?
    (ie - can you continue to stay in Garnerville, - and if so do you have to pay, share rooms, etc etc).
    Cheers
    Lis




  • Hello Liz!

    Not heard from you for a while, have you had word?
    I hope everything is well seeing as you're talking about the course.

    I beleive you can say in Garnerville FOC for the entire course but I'm sure PSNI will confirm.

    Martin.


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  • It's at the discretion of whoever is responsible for room allocations. If you live fairly local, then they will most likely deny your request. On the other hand, if you live in Derry, you'll get a room for the full 21 weeks. People relocating to Northern Ireland are able to stay until they find permanent accomodation within commuting distance to their DCU allocation (which you only find out the day before you pass out!).




  • Thanks PSNI!
    Coming from Cork, I guess I'd be allowed stay if that's the case! One less thing to worry about.... :-)

    No news yet Martin...reckon it'll be about May/June for me (of course - that's if the vetting ever comes thru also LOL)...

    Lis




  • Shield wrote: »
    It's at the discretion of whoever is responsible for room allocations. If you live fairly local, then they will most likely deny your request. On the other hand, if you live in Derry, you'll get a room for the full 21 weeks. People relocating to Northern Ireland are able to stay until they find permanent accomodation within commuting distance to their DCU allocation (which you only find out the day before you pass out!).


    psni
    how soon after 'passing out' are you based at ur dcu. surely thye dont give 1 days notice before you have to go to ur dcu




  • I think you find out the day before attestation?

    There is then 10 weeks of firearms/driving etc before you’ll be on station?

    Could be wrong but I’m sure someone will clarify.

    Martin.




  • I think you find out the day before attestation?

    There is then 10 weeks of firearms/driving etc before you’ll be on station?

    Could be wrong but I’m sure someone will clarify.

    Martin.

    ^^^ What he said!


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  • Few questions for Shield or any other serving officer or student officer...?

    1. Is it possible to bring a laptop to Garnerville? Is there wireless internet access? Or is this against the rules?

    2. Are there any books out there that might give an idea of the subjects studied? the "Blackstones" books on Amazon seem interesting, but are they relevant to the PSNI?

    3. Can ye give us an idea of the typical day/week in training? In particular the first 4 weeks?

    4. Would there be an issue with me helping out with the family business on the weekends off, or is this against the rules or is the courseload so great that weekend studying is required?

    5. Does overtime form an important part of the pay as it does for the Gardai? I have a number of friends in the GS who reckon they could not survive without their OT. Not important, just wondering...

    6. How long does one have to be in an assigned DCU before being able rto request a transfer? While I'm sure it wouldn't do oneself any favours to request straight away, I'm a city boy and am afraid of large green open spaces...:p

    Hope I'm not asking too much...




  • Fiacmar wrote: »
    Few questions for PSNI or any other serving officer or student officer...?

    1. Is it possible to bring a laptop to Garnerville? Is there wireless internet access? Or is this against the rules?

    2. Are there any books out there that might give an idea of the subjects studied? the "Blackstones" books on Amazon seem interesting, but are they relevant to the PSNI?

    3. Can ye give us an idea of the typical day/week in training? In particular the first 4 weeks?

    4. Would there be an issue with me helping out with the family business on the weekends off, or is this against the rules or is the courseload so great that weekend studying is required?

    5. Does overtime form an important part of the pay as it does for the Gardai? I have a number of friends in the GS who reckon they could not survive without their OT. Not important, just wondering...

    6. How long does one have to be in an assigned DCU before being able rto request a transfer? While I'm sure it wouldn't do oneself any favours to request straight away, I'm a city boy and am afraid of large green open spaces...:p

    Hope I'm not asking too much...

    Love the Ghandi bit bty :D




  • I think they have a "no laptop" rule now but you could just hide it in your room. I also think the "no laptop" rule is for the college itself and not the accomodation block.

    No wireless I'm afraid. That would have been really handy.

    If you can, get yourself a printed copy of The Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989. That's about the most relevant book out there.

    A typical day would consist of a combination of any from from classroom work, drill, PE, Personal Safety, practical exercises, lectures, group work and personal time to get all of your paperwork done. A few of the days in the first 4 weeks are 12-hour days.

    I really don't see you having time to help anyone over the weekend. If you do, then something's wrong. You will have revision and "pre-reads" to do for the following Monday. They just love springing surprise tests on Monday.

    Overtime varies from DCU to DCU. Some love it, some hate it. The base salary and special allowance is good enough to live on IMO.

    Usually you have to be in your DCU for your probationary period of 2 years before you can apply to be transferred.
    Fiacmar wrote: »
    Few questions for PSNI or any other serving officer or student officer...?

    1. Is it possible to bring a laptop to Garnerville? Is there wireless internet access? Or is this against the rules?

    2. Are there any books out there that might give an idea of the subjects studied? the "Blackstones" books on Amazon seem interesting, but are they relevant to the PSNI?

    3. Can ye give us an idea of the typical day/week in training? In particular the first 4 weeks?

    4. Would there be an issue with me helping out with the family business on the weekends off, or is this against the rules or is the courseload so great that weekend studying is required?

    5. Does overtime form an important part of the pay as it does for the Gardai? I have a number of friends in the GS who reckon they could not survive without their OT. Not important, just wondering...

    6. How long does one have to be in an assigned DCU before being able rto request a transfer? While I'm sure it wouldn't do oneself any favours to request straight away, I'm a city boy and am afraid of large green open spaces...:p

    Hope I'm not asking too much...




  • This is a great post and am sure a fair bit of it is relevent to Templemore too




  • As for the laptop question, i definitely heard the sergeant say that you where allowed a laptop in your room but you will have no internet access.


    On the point of the Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 book, i rang TSO bookstore in Belfast as they are stockist of such items, they say its now been superceeded by a new edition, leaves me a bit confused though they say they dont stock the older(1989) one anymore so will have to be the new edition;)




  • just wondering,considering you mention quite alot about our boots,do we have to buy these ourselves or are these provided?
    cheers.




  • Shield wrote: »
    I think they have a "no laptop" rule now but you could just hide it in your room. I also think the "no laptop" rule is for the college itself and not the accomodation block.

    No wireless I'm afraid. That would have been really handy.

    If you can, get yourself a printed copy of The Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989. That's about the most relevant book out there.

    A typical day would consist of a combination of any from from classroom work, drill, PE, Personal Safety, practical exercises, lectures, group work and personal time to get all of your paperwork done. A few of the days in the first 4 weeks are 12-hour days.

    I really don't see you having time to help anyone over the weekend. If you do, then something's wrong. You will have revision and "pre-reads" to do for the following Monday. They just love springing surprise tests on Monday.

    Overtime varies from DCU to DCU. Some love it, some hate it. The base salary and special allowance is good enough to live on IMO.

    Usually you have to be in your DCU for your probationary period of 2 years before you can apply to be transferred.

    Thanks for that. Shall print it off and present it as evidence to the family :D




  • just wondering,considering you mention quite alot about our boots,do we have to buy these ourselves or are these provided?
    cheers.


    Every piece of uniform is provided free of charge.




  • Just a couple of questions about PSNI pay.

    1) I notice from the Consensia site, the starting salary's £21,534 and after initial training that goes up to £24,039. How long does it take for this rise in salary?

    2) I also understand PSNI officers get a NI transitional allowance of about £2000 per year. Is that on top of the salaries listed above? Also, do you know when new recruits begin receiving this allowance?

    Have to ask about the money don't ya!




  • Hi Shield,

    Can you tell us what happens (if you know, and the info hasn't changed much since your call-up) once you're told 'you're in, starting xyz' ?

    For example, with the upcoming intake on Sunday April 20th, folk are getting the call about now. SRN is the Monday 7th April. So for example, if I can wangle the time from work cos of hols owed to me, I wouldn't mind absconding the weekend before the intake date for a few days. That advisable, or will we have a heap of study to be doing? I know there's a mega shopping trip to organise, but being an expert shopper, I'm hoping that shouldn't be too torturous. So do I need to devote time to anything else?

    cheers
    Lis


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  • fencingj wrote: »
    Just a couple of questions about PSNI pay.

    1) I notice from the Consensia site, the starting salary's £21,534 and after initial training that goes up to £24,039. How long does it take for this rise in salary?

    2) I also understand PSNI officers get a NI transitional allowance of about £2000 per year. Is that on top of the salaries listed above? Also, do you know when new recruits begin receiving this allowance?

    Have to ask about the money don't ya!

    1. The salary goes up the Monday after you pass out.
    2. You receive the "special allowance" from Day 1 as a Student Officer.




  • lisnsooz wrote: »
    Hi PSNI,

    Can you tell us what happens (if you know, and the info hasn't changed much since your call-up) once you're told 'you're in, starting xyz' ?

    For example, with the upcoming intake on Sunday April 20th, folk are getting the call about now. SRN is the Monday 7th April. So for example, if I can wangle the time from work cos of hols owed to me, I wouldn't mind absconding the weekend before the intake date for a few days. That advisable, or will we have a heap of study to be doing? I know there's a mega shopping trip to organise, but being an expert shopper, I'm hoping that shouldn't be too torturous. So do I need to devote time to anything else?

    cheers
    Lis

    Sure you can take a bit of a break before you start. You won't be allowed any holidays during the training so enjoy your free time while you can. The real study only starts after the 3rd or 4th week so you'll be fine for time on that front. Just devote time to getting fit, because you will get a good pounding in your first few PE sessions so the staff can see where everybody is at physically.




  • Shield wrote: »
    Sure you can take a bit of a break before you start. You won't be allowed any holidays during the training so enjoy your free time while you can. The real study only starts after the 3rd or 4th week so you'll be fine for time on that front. Just devote time to getting fit, because you will get a good pounding in your first few PE sessions so the staff can see where everybody is at physically.


    super PSNI - thanks a mill. I heard a rumour (or rather read the angsting) that there are stuff to be learned before class on the first day so we can recite by heart? Is that correct?




  • lisnsooz wrote: »
    super Shield - thanks a mill. I heard a rumour (or rather read the angsting) that there are stuff to be learned before class on the first day so we can recite by heart? Is that correct?

    You wouldn't want me to ruin the surprise now would you? :pac:




  • Shield wrote: »
    You wouldn't want me to ruin the surprise now would you? :pac:

    hmm - guess I'd need something to keep me entertained whilst lolling by a pool sipping cocktails.... :D




  • lisnsooz wrote: »
    hmm - guess I'd need something to keep me entertained whilst lolling by a pool sipping cocktails.... :D

    You'll have a nice little booklet to keep you company called "Definitions". You will need to know it (literally) word-for-word.

    ;)




  • Shield wrote: »
    You'll have a nice little booklet to keep you company called "Definitions". You will need to know it (literally) word-for-word.

    ;)

    :eek: don't like the sound of THAT. It's a long time since Leaving Cert English poetry!!!! Will have to get both mental and physical self worked out sharpish :rolleyes: I'm going to bookmark all these pages so I can remind myself in 4 months' time that I did definitely know what I was getting myself in for...




  • Shield wrote: »
    You'll have a nice little booklet to keep you company called "Definitions". You will need to know it (literally) word-for-word.

    ;)

    Ah yes Definitions....enjoy! ;)




  • Shield wrote: »
    1. The salary goes up the Monday after you pass out.
    2. You receive the "special allowance" from Day 1 as a Student Officer.

    Thanks Shield! Just to get it right - when you say pass out...does that happen after 20 weeks?? Then there's another 10 weeks or so, when the fun stuff begins...driving school and firearms, etc???

    Definitions??? Don't you people not think us newbies have enough to worry about LOL!


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  • fencingj wrote: »
    Thanks PSNI! Just to get it right - when you say pass out...does that happen after 20 weeks?? Then there's another 10 weeks or so, when the fun stuff begins...driving school and firearms, etc???

    Definitions??? Don't you people not think us newbies have enough to worry about LOL!

    You pass out at the end of your 21st week. Salary increase kicks in the following Monday.


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