Covering 12,000 square miles of loch, glens, islands and mountains, Police Scotland’s Highlands and Islands division is Britain’s biggest beat. Highland Cops goes inside this unique police division to find out what it takes to patrol the beat and keep the peace in the most beautiful and challenging places in Britain.

Cutting-edge crime fighting works alongside old-school rural policing, tackling 21st century problems that threaten traditional ways of life.

You can watch the series on BBC iPlayer, on BBC Scotland on Sundays at 9pm and on BBC TWO on Tuesdays at 9pm

Pick of The Day / Critics' Choice

The Times, Guardian, Daily Telegraph, The Sun, Daily Mirror, Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, The i, Daily Record, The Mirror

The sheer variety of the police work showcased makes it an absorbing watch, and quite different to other detective documentaries.

Daily Mail

This unusual police documentary follows officers working Britain's biggest beat as part of the Highlands And Islands Division. County lines drugs gangs and missing persons are still problems amid the picturesque lochs, glens and mountains; more specific to the region is the otter-related crime.

Sunday Times

Just look at this backdrop – mountains that touch the sky, lochs that go on for ever, harsh, stunning, scary wilderness, with only the odd eagle to answer the siren's lonely wail as the polis wagon edges round yet another hairpin bend.

The Scotsman

The large beat is as challenging as it is beautiful. The vastness is one of the main problems for our coppers but, as in every part of Britain, people don't tend to dial 999 if they are having a good day, as one of the officers tells us.

The Times

This documentary series gives any crime drama a run for its money, and it features the magnificent Scottish landscape to boot.


Highland Cops is a no nonsense title for an equally straightforward but engrossing docuseries. As we learn from James Cosmo’s voiceover, Police Scotland’s Highlands and Islands Division is “Britain’s biggest beat”, covering some 12,000 square miles. It may not have much in the way of mean streets to walk down (though there are a few, mostly made that way by drugs), but this vast area is far from a sleepy backwater.

The Herald

This new series explores the challenges of rural policing; the coppers we meet are covering “Britain’s biggest beat” – an area of Scotland the size of Belgium. While some of the crime is region-specific (this week: poaching, missing hikers), much (the drug trade) is sadly universal. Still, even if the subject matter is bleak, the scenery is stunning.

The Guardian

To watch the programme is to experience steadily mounting delight

Daily Express