The Army may have to be deployed on the streets of mainland Britain to carry out routine policing duties because constables are reluctant to train as firearms officers, it has been warned. Steve White, chairman of the Police Federation, said officers are not volunteering to carry guns because they fear being “hung out to dry” and treated like a suspect if they discharge their weapon.

It could force the Government to call in troops to carry out day-to-day guarding and patrolling duties at major transport hubs, city centres and key buildings such as the Houses of Parliament, he suggested. Mr White, who opens the federation’s annual conference in Bournemouth, Dorset, on Monday, said a national shortage of armed police was leaving Britain vulnerable to terror attack. READ MORE