The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) has today been informed by the Chief Constable Sir Stephen House of his intention to step down from his position at the beginning of December.
Vic Emery, chair of the SPA, said:
"I want to pay tribute to Sir Stephen House. I firmly believe he has been the right individual at the right time to lead Police Scotland through the combined challenges of major reorganisation, fundamental reform and reduced funding.
“Sometimes the public don’t always see the real person behind the public profile. Steve has always been a constable first, and a chief officer second. He has continued to see policing as a lifelong personal vocation, not simply a career ladder to climb. I believe that will be a view of him shared by many thousands of officers and staff across Police Scotland.
"As Chief Constable of both Strathclyde Police and Police Scotland he has served the people of Scotland with distinction for over a decade. Many aspects of policing in Scotland are stronger now than they were a decade ago. He can take great pride for the significant personal contribution he has made to that.
“While this part of his vocation is coming to an end, the shift is not yet over. He has been a hands-on, working Chief Constable every day I have known him, and I have every confidence that he will be just that for his remaining period at the helm of Police Scotland.
“It now falls to the SPA to put suitable arrangements in place to begin the process of identifying and appointing a permanent successor. We will start to put that process together in the coming days. Rightly, and once appointed, that will be a process that my own successor as Chair will have a key role in shaping and completing.”
NOTE FOR NEWS EDITORS
The Scottish Police Authority has the responsibility for appointing the Chief Constable of Police Scotland. Such an appointment is subject to approval by Scottish Ministers.