I REFER to your article in Friday’s edition of The Press about direct-entry police superintendents.

I am at a loss to understand how direct entry into the police service of people with management experience into superintending ranks would work.

Once again there is a lack of understanding as to what the role entails. Why do people without policing experience continue to think they should manage it: look what non-medical staff in management have done to the hospitals?

As with every other rank in the police service, superintendents have operational and specific legislative responsibilities. They are senior operational commanders.

Their ability to perform these roles comes from years of experience working up through the ranks, watching and learning from their own and others experience.

They have rank-specific legal responsibilities, these could be technically trained but the application of these needs a broad understanding of so many issues it is difficult to see how.

Superintendents need to be leaders, not ‘just’ managers.

If there are any left in purely management roles, then they should be replaced by non-police staff. But given the financial climate, I bet they are few and far between and would be far better dealt by appropriate HR strategies.

Roger Smith, Sand Hutton, York