Let police officers enjoy snowball fights, says deputy Met chief

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“In one it’s with the community – that’s great community engagement,” she wrote. “In another they are targeting one another in a moment of downtime.

“Our people do stressful jobs & I have no problem with them having a small moment of fun. Of course they need to be aware of the perceptions of professionalism.

“At this impending Christmas time, let’s just be a little more tolerant of those who are doing their best in the hardest of circumstances. We won’t always get it right, but this isn’t one of those times.”

In one video earlier this week, six police officers were seen stepping out of a riot van in Stoke Newington and chasing each other around a park, throwing snowballs.

After it was posted online, a complaint was reportedly made because the officers were “not acting professionally”. The officers were thought to have been on a break.

At the time, the Met Police said: “Officers are allowed downtime but have been reminded of the importance of acting professionally while in uniform.”

In previous years, police have been criticised for tobogganing using riot shields, while during Covid lockdowns last winter several forces threatened the public with fines if they threw snowballs or tobogganed.

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