(EXPRESS) — A POLICE force had to withdraw an online recruitment advert after almost 300,000 hits for 25 jobs despite a reduced salary of £19,000 a year.

The Wiltshire Police website crashed after being deluged with 282,500 hits in the first hour of opening, including 100,000 in the first five minutes.

The site reopened but was closed completely within 2m hours because of the sheer volume of applicants trying to submit forms for the trainee constable jobs. Staff now have 1,000 applications to sift through. The force is the first in the country to launch an open recruitment drive since the Government slashed the starting salary by £4,000.

Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.