National Counter Terrorism Policing (NCTP HQ)
ACPO Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service

Counter Terrorism Policing

Counter Terrorism Policing is an alliance of UK police forces working closely with security and intelligence agencies to prevent, deter and investigate terrorist activity. It is accountable to the NPCC Counter Terrorism Coordination Committee (CTCC) and works tirelessly to protect the public and our national security.

It does this by working in local to global partnerships: from neighbourhood policing teams on the ground, supported by a national network of officers and staff to specialist international investigators and advisors working around the world.

The Network

The National Counter Terrorism Policing Network stretches across the UK and sees specialist officers and staff working with MI5 and other partners to find information and evidence to thwart terrorist planning and help bring perpetrators to justice.

It is made up of dedicated regional and national police units, and is responsible for the delivery of the UK policing contribution to HMG’s CONTEST Strategy.

Regional units

Around the country there are eleven regional counter terrorism units (CTU) and intelligence units (CTIU), which bring together intelligence, operations and investigation functions, engaging with a range of partners to prevent terrorist activity.

The regional Counter Terrorism Units gather intelligence and evidence to help prevent, disrupt and prosecute terrorists and terrorist activities. Each CTU provides coordination and specialist support and has a wide range of expertise including skilled detectives, financial investigators, analysts, forensic specialists and high-tech Investigators. The CTUs are located as follows:

Regional CTUs

Forces in region

CT lead force

North West CTU

Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Cumbria, Isle of Man, Lancashire & Merseyside

Greater Manchester

North East CTU

West Yorkshire, Cleveland, Durham, Humberside, Northumbria, North Yorkshire & South Yorkshire

West Yorkshire


Thames Valley, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey &


Thames Valley


West Midlands, Staffordshire, Warwickshire & West Mercia

West Midlands

London (SO15)

Metropolitan & City of London


The regional Counter Terrorism Intelligence Units are also resourced by the police forces in their respective areas and carry out primarily intelligence gathering operations, and are located as follows:

Regional CTIUs

Forces in region

CT lead force

South West CTIU

Avon & Somerset, Devon & Cornwall, Dorset,

Gloucestershire, Wiltshire, Guernsey & Jersey

Avon & Somerset


South Wales, Dyfed–Powys, Gwent & North Wales ·

South Wales

Eastern CTIU

Bedfordshire, Essex, Cambridgeshire,

Hertfordshire, Suffolk & Norfolk


East Midlands CTIU

Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire,

Northamptonshire, & Nottinghamshire


Scotland CTIU

Police Scotland

Police Scotland

Northern Ireland CTIU



National units

At the centre of the network sits the National Counter Terrorism Policing Headquarters (NCTPHQ), which devises policy and strategy, and provides corporate and support services to the CT network. The HQ co-ordinates national projects and programmes, and advises the government on how much and where budgets should be allocated to police forces in England and Wales. Most importantly the NCTPHQ provides a single national CT policing voice for key stakeholders including government, security agencies and other partners.

Alongside the headquarters is the National Counter Terrorism Policing Operations Centre (NCTPOC) which is a central operational command made up of units that provide operational support to the national network. Teams within the Operations Centre are: Ports, Intelligence, Firearms Suppression, Coordination Centre.

Other parts of the CT network include Special Branches and other specialist units.