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Recognising the commitment of Special Constables who selflessly give up their time to police

Smaller---Special-Awards-Press-2,--photographer-Lily-Wildgoose

Photo courtesy of Lily Wildgoose, nominees for Special of the Year from L-R: CI Kevan Rowlands, Sean Parker, Verity Treverton-Jones, Ryan Cox (winner of Bristol Special of the Year), Charlotte Wyatt, Tom Tooth and Steve Jones

People who give up their time for free to police Bristol were recognised at an event in the city last night, Thursday 1 May.

Avon and Somerset Police’s Chief Constable Nick Gargan presented seven Special Constables with awards recognising their commitment.  The Chief Officer of the Special Constabulary in Avon and Somerset, David Farrell, and Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens were also at the event.

Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mounstevens said: "I admire and value the dedication and commitment of all the Special Constables we have in Avon and Somerset. Specials are both an important and valued aspect of policing, bringing a different type of dynamic and enthusiasm to the police.

“Special Constables play a vital role in reducing the fear of crime by offering reassurance to residents, acting as a vital link between local communities and neighbourhood policing teams. I was delighted to see so many Specials recognised for their hard work and selflessness at last night’s Bristol Specials' Awards.”

Special Constables Jason Grant, 40, and Philippe Francken, 30, were both commended for completing six years' service.

Special Constables Ross Larner, 30, and Cameron Shaw, 31, and Special Sergeant Marcus Lynes, 37, all received awards marking nine years' service.

Special Sergeants Matthew Kelly, 48, and William Kwok, 43, were recognised for completing 19 years' service.

Bristol Policing Area Commander Chief Superintendent Jon Reilly gave out certificates recognising the achievement of 400 hours on duty to:
- Special Constables Benjamin Peacock, 21, Tracy Hale, 40, John Pearce, 41, and Ryan Cox, 21
- Special Sergeants Thomas Isbell, 22, Verity Treverton-Jones, 25, and Tom Boodeny, 22
- Special Inspectors Matt Ford, 29, Simon Baker, 37, and Steve Jones, 32
- Special Chief Inspectors Nick Dixon, 46, and Steven Drew, 50

The Bristol Special Constable of the Year Award was presented to SC Ryan Cox by Chief Inspector Kevan Rowlands.

Ryan was nominated for the award by no fewer than eight of his regular officer colleagues who said of him:
“Ryan is a natural police officer and has a wonderful manner with people … he is a calming influence in many situations.”
“I have never met anyone so dedicated to the service … he is a key member of our team.”
“Ryan has put in an enormous amount of his own time to support the public … during this time he was injured on duty but was back within only a few days. He has averaged 76 hours a month working as a special for over a year which is a tremendous commitment.”

Also nominated for the award were:
Charlotte Wyatt, Sean Parker, Verity Treverton-Jones, Thomas Tooth, Steve Jones and Ben Peacock.

CI Rowlands said: “The evening was a fantastic chance for us to recognise the excellent work that our colleagues in the Special Constabulary do alongside regular officers to keep Bristol safe.

“It has been my privilege to select the winner of the Special Constable of the Year Award and it has been truly inspiring to learn of the courage, dedication and hard work of all the officers nominated for the award.

“There is no better example of true policing by consent than when members of the community give up their time to help those around them by volunteering as a Special Constable. I was delighted to have the chance to celebrate their achievements.”

Tweeting from the event, Chief Constable Nick Gargan commented on the range of day jobs held by the Specials he met, including surveyor, florist, warehouseman, accountant, student and carpenter.
He also noted that Specials in Bristol had given up 29, 479 hours to voluntarily policing the city in the past 12 months.

Special Constables have the same powers as regular officers, including the power of arrest. They wear the same uniform and carry the same equipment as their regular colleagues. As volunteers drawn from local communities they provide a unique link between the police and the communities we serve.

Posted on Friday 2nd May 2014
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