Chief constable for Dorset to retire in autumn

Dorset’s chief constable James Vaughan is to take retirement this year, after delaying the decision because of the pandemic.

He began his career in Wiltshire Police in 1992, working his way up from the ranks in various uniform and detective roles, before becoming the head of CID.


Joining Dorset Police as assistant chief constable in May 2012, he then moved quickly to become deputy chief constable.

In 2018 he was promoted to chief constable and awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in the New Year’s Honours.

Dorset Police Constable James Vaughan and Dorset PCC David Sidwick
Dorset PCC

Dorset chief constable James Vaughan with Dorset police and crime commissioner David Sidwick

“Take retirement in the autumn at the end of what is predicted to be a very busy summer”

Chief Constable James Vaughan said:

“I began to seriously consider retirement this time last year but delayed my decision due to the Covid-19 pandemic, during which I chaired the Local Resilience Forum to coordinate the joint response to the emergency.

“Moving forward into this year, I chose to delay any announcements on retirement to ensure they did not distract candidates and the electorate in the police and crime commissioner elections, which were held in May.

“I will take retirement in the autumn at the end of what is predicted to be a very busy summer. This will allow me to help our new police and crime commissioner David Sidwick, to develop a new police and crime plan to take the force through to 2024/25, set a new budget for next year and select a new chief constable.”

David Sidwick sworn in as Dorset PCC
Dorset PCC

Dorset police and crime commissioner David Sidwick, with Dorset chief constable James Vaughan

“Appointing a new chief constable”

It will now be down to the newly elected Dorset police and crime commissioner David Sidwick to appoint a replacement. He said:

“I would like to thank James on behalf of Dorset’s communities for his unwavering commitment to keeping people safe.

“Since joining Dorset Police as assistant chief constable in 2012, James has shown exceptional leadership during a very challenging period – perhaps best illustrated by his stewardship during the unprecedented public health crisis of the last year or so.

“Appointing a new chief constable is one the most important responsibilities for a police and crime commissioner. I will work to ensure that the best possible candidate is appointed so that Dorset’s communities receive the policing that they expect and deserve.”

Share this story

Contact us

Do you have anything to add to this story?

We like to keep everything up-to-date, so if you know more, please help us by getting in touch.


Top stories

Storm Ciarán sweeps into Swanage brushing away its flood defences Concrete blocks along Swanage seafront to protect against flooding were strewn across the road by the force of Storm Ciarán, while Studland beaches had about five years of coastal erosion ... 1 month ago BBC snubs Purbeck by filming Enid Blyton stories in Cornwall 1 week ago Polar Express magic arrives in Swanage for Christmas 3 weeks ago Crisis at Swanage Railway as £450,000 survival fund is launched 1 month ago Restaurant with perfect view of Swanage Bay to open in 2024 2 weeks ago

Most recent

Inspiring Christmas trees at Swanage festival A dazzling display of decorated trees is delighting visitors to the Emmanuel Baptist Church in Swanage, for the annual Purbeck Christmas Tree Festival. 18 hours ago Enchanted evenings light up Purbeck secret garden 2 days ago Swanage seafront survey result gives council splitting headache 3 days ago Plans for growth at Swanage community garden 4 days ago Corfe Castle celebrates a big birthday at Xmas 5 days ago