“What I’d like to see from the next government is a commitment to policing, to officer welfare and to increasing our numbers,” says Mike Harrison, Chairman of the Gloucestershire Police Federation.

“It’s imperative that police officers are rewarded with the correct pay levels and that they get the proper support they need,” he adds.

The National Chair of the Police Federation has said a public inquiry into policing is long overdue and demanded an end to what he called the “postcode lottery of funding” for police forces.

He said: “It’s been almost 60 years since the last Royal Commission on policing. Much has changed during this time. In that 60 years the UK population has increased by more than 14 million people, who all need the police.

“That’s why I genuinely believe that the time has come to ask the public what they want from their police: is the current model of policing right for the next 100 years?

“We have a funding formula which sees a disparity in what people in one force area can get compared to those from another. It’s a postcode lottery of funding that is grossly unfair.”

He also pointed to recent research conducted by the Federation which revealed more than half of police officers worry about money on an almost daily basis.

The findings from the Federation’s annual Pay and Morale Survey found only 36% of respondents said they had enough money to cover monthly essentials, with around one in eight admitting they have had to seek financial support to cover day to day expenses within the last year.

Mr Apter added: “We have massive increasing demands on policing and our members, to a level which is simply unsustainable.

“Only this week we published the results of the latest pay and morale survey which showed that 75% of police officers say they are worse off financially this year than last.

“There are some officers who, if it wasn’t for overtime, simply wouldn’t be able to put food on their table or pay their bills. This is shameful – this is wrong, and it must change.”