From 20 March 2006, it will be a legal requirement for all C.P.O.’s
in England and Wales (supplied under contract) to hold a Security Industry
Authority (SIA) licence. The SIA began issuing licence application packs
for CPO’s in September 2005. They can be obtained from the SIA.
All applicants are required to undergo identity and criminality checks.
They must also demonstrate that they have the skills to perform their
role by attaining an SIA approved Level 3 qualification in Close Protection
and must hold a recognised first aid certificate.
Those who already have some form of formal close protection training
may be exempt from all or part of the SIA approved training - please see
All candidates must take a knowledge test and practical skills assessment.
The SIA has endorsed awarding bodies to offer qualifications and approve
training providers. The three awarding bodies that offer the new Close
Protection qualification are:
Edexcel - award the Level 3 BTEC Certificate in Close Protection
City & Guilds - award the Level 3 Certificate in Close Protection.
Buckingham Chilterns University College (BCUC) - award the Level 3 Certificate
in Protective Security
First aid awards recognised by the SIA are:
Aid at Work - 4-day course (HSE approved)
Person on Scene (FPOS) Intermediate Award - Edexcel/Institute of Healthcare
More first aid courses will be endorsed at a later date.
If you have previously received formal close protection training and
are currently employed in an operational close protection role you should
take evidence of your training to an approved training centre where it
will be decided whether you need to take the full 150 hours Close Protection
If you completed formal close protection training from the organisations
listed below since 1 January 2002, and have remained in an operational
close protection role, you will be exempt from further training but will
be required to take the knowledge test and a practical skills assessment.
Any of the following will be recognised:
Special Air Service Regiment Body Guard Course
Royal Military Police Close Protection Course
Metropolitan Police Royalty Protection/Special Branch Close Protection
Police National Close Protection Courses including Northern Ireland
Nemesis Group Close Protection Course
Phoenix Close Protection Course.
The SIA strongly recommend that if you are eligible for assessment
only you should consider attending the 24-hour Refresher Course. If you
have trained in either a police or military environment you may find the
terminology and procedures to be different in a civilian context, and
the Refresher Course will give you the best opportunity of passing the