Tonight (Thursday 28 November) officers and staff who have reached the milestone of working for the police for 20 or more years will be celebrated and recognised at a Long Service Award Ceremony.
Serving their local communities has been their life’s career.
Those being recognised and rewarded are both front line officers and support staff who have all dedicated their careers to the police.
Chief Constable Lee Freeman will be presenting police officers with a long service medal* and support staff are presented with a commemorative crystal award.
Recipients, along with guests, will be warmly welcomed by the Chief Constable in the presence of the Humberside Police Federation, Unison representatives and also guest speaker the High Sheriff Mrs Sue Stephenson.
As part of this celebration we spoke to some of those working across the force in very difference roles to hear what they were doing before joining the police and a little bit about their careers and plans for the future.
Chief Inspector Will Jenkins is currently working in Hull as part of the Neighbourhood Policing team but has roots firmly established on both sides of the river having been brought up in Grimsby.
Will said, “Before to joining the police I was working in a Grimsby industrial foundry, Fowler and Holden Ltd. I was what is known as a fettler. A fettler is a person who cleans off the metal castings using grinders and tools to tidy up component parts prior to sale.
“When I first joined the police in 1999 it was as a police patrol officer in Grimsby.
“I am currently a Chief Inspector in charge of Neighbourhood Policing on the South Bank. That includes all the PCSOs, PCs, Beat Managers, Sergeants and Inspectors that look after the day to day interaction with the public and community partnership work – the face of the police that the public see.
“The best part of working for Humberside Police for the past 20 years is I’ve met people from all over the world and from police forces from up and down the country. I have met some really interesting people. One of my roles was head of public order and specialist training for two forces with both Humberside and South Yorkshire Police.
“Because of the relatively small size of Humberside Police you pretty much know most people. You get very much a family feel and rather than feeling like a number or another cog in the process, I actually feel that there are not an awful lot of people that I don’t know at least by sight. The chief knows me by my first name and that close family feel makes a big difference.
“I have also been lucky enough to be funded to take a Master’s Degree as well.
“If you have asked me on day one if I would have envisaged doing the things I have done then I would have said no. I have a further ten years to go in my career as a police officer and it gives me the drive to look for the next challenge and opportunity. Certainly within Humberside Police those opportunities are there for you if you want them.
“There is one case in my career that really sticks out to me where I feel I made a real difference. When I was a Neighbourhood Inspector in Grimsby we had a lady who was eighty years-old and was suffering from harassment. Things were being moved and damaged and her telephone lines cut!
“Although she actually wasn’t vulnerable through her age, she was an intelligent and switched on lady, her vulnerability was that she had no family or friends around her and was quite isolated. Cutting the telephone line isolated her further and she lost contact with the outside world.
“We investigated the incidents and as part of the investigation installed covert cameras. We had no idea who was doing this to the woman or why. It was causing her anxiety and sleepless nights and really starting to affect her physically which we were really worried about.
“The only person in the world that she had a relationship with was her neighbour who was in a supporting role in her life. This man was everything to her and with the covert cameras we quickly established that it was him that was causing the problems.
“We arrested the neighbour and although it was devastating for her to find that someone she trusted had broken that trust, it was comforting for her to have an answer. We supported her and put some support measures in place to help her continue to live independently. This is only one of many jobs but one that really made a big difference to her life.
“Looking to the future, I am challenge driven and so am looking for further promotion. So we will see where the future takes me. I am actually also considering undertaking a PHD, and I never thought that in a month of Sundays I would take an academic route. I have really enjoyed the challenge of the Master’s Degree, although it was difficult to juggle the degree with work and family life, I still want push myself.
“The best day of my career for me was my graduation day (for my Master’s Degree).
“I did a police related degree at Cambridge. I never thought I would be successful so having my family and friends alongside new friends from Cambridge there was fantastic.
“To go to Senate House for the graduation process was something I will never forget.
“The advice I would give to anyone starting a career with the police would be that most people come in with lots of motivation but with a lot of self-doubt. There is a reason why we have a two-year probation period, we know it takes an awfully long time for people to become competent and confident to undertake the role of a police officer. Don’t put yourself under too much pressure, accept that you will make mistakes.
“A police officer is paid a good salary to do their job so have the confidence in your ability. We want officers who can make difficult decisions. We pay well and train well and it’s key part of the role for officers to take the lead and make decisions.
“Also don’t be afraid to challenge – just because culturally it’s been done one way before doesn’t mean we shouldn’t ask questions and respectfully challenge others.”
We spoke with Police Constable (PC) Susan Scott who is a Roads Policing and Family Liaison Officer based at Melton Special Operation Unit.
“Before joining the police I was a Secretary at Hunstman Tioxide Europe Ltd. I initially started on a Youth Training Scheme (YTS) and stayed there 12 years.
“I wanted to join the police as my Grandfather was a Chief Superintendent at South Yorkshire Police. When he retired he joined the Grimsby Borough Police as a Firearms Licencing Officer.
“I first started on the new “E” shift at the Grimsby Police Station. I spent 5 years as an Incident Response Officer in Grimsby and went on to the Grimsby Central Local Policing Team (LPT’s) when they were first introduced.
“In 2005 I joined the Traffic Department at Grimsby. I have been a Family Liaison Officer for the past 11 years. The job as a Family Liaison Officer is a very hard but rewarding part of my role, supporting families who have had some of the worse news imaginable and can react in different ways. I hope that what I do will give them both the immediate and long term support they need.
“Sometimes it can affect you as a police officer but I have the support of colleagues and my family. Once a year we have an assessment with the Occupational Health team but you can self-refer if and when required.
“I have worked at Grimsby, Brigg and now Melton. I still cover the South Bank as my predominant patrol area. I am trained in Tactical Pursuits and Containment.
“One of the highlights of my career was that I was one of the first officers to volunteer to take part in the filming of the first ever recordings of BBC Traffic Cops which featured Humberside Police. A cameraman would come out on patrol with us and film what we did on a day to day basis. On day 2 we filmed a fatal RTC, it was the first time any of the crew had ever been issued with stab vests – the crew were with us for approx. 6 months every day filming.
“For the past 11 years I have been involved in Rescue Day which is a family fun day held every July in Crowle, North Lincolnshire. This is a charity run by volunteers in their spare time. Emergency Services representatives from all backgrounds are invited to come together to provide a family fun day showcasing all aspects of the Emergency Service from mock train collisions, house fires. I am one part of a very small team who assist in the planning and organising of the event. Our aim is to raise money in order to put Defibrillators and other lifesaving equipment back into the local community for North Lincolnshire.
“Looking to the future I would like to continue to work in the Road’s Policing Department. The day to day work of stopping and educating people when dealing with road traffic collision and offences is the best part of my job, it’s necessary to keep our roads safe and to make sure people abide by the law. The part of my job that I love is the work we do to prevent serious and organised criminals using our roads to commit crime, there’s nothing better than using our TPAC knowledge and experience to bring a vehicle to a safe stop and conclusion.
“The best day of my career would be when in 2007 I was awarded a Commendation by His Honour Judge M T Cracknell for my initiative, behaviour and actions and especially for the first aid that I gave at the scene after the horrific attack of Jamie ESKRETT during a violent street disorder where the victim was fatally stabbed. The award was presented by Lady Sara McCorquodale (Princess Diana’s sister) at the Grimsby Police Station – this was definitely my proudest moment.
“If I were to advise new starters I would say to enjoy every day, learn from your mistakes, and soak up the experience and knowledge from your peers as every day is different. I would advise to use your common sense and remain grounded, it’s a great job and you can have a brilliant career as a police officer.”
William Lambert took some time out as his role as Joint Fleet Manager for the ESFM based at Melton to speak to us about his career.
“Before I came to Humberside Police I was Head of Logistics Support at Powergen’s Ferrybridge ‘C’ Power Station – quite a change of direction. I was responsible for commissioning contractor staff and logistics to conduct the station’s multi-million pound annual unit outage which dismantles and rebuilds one of the generating units.
“My first police job was as the Purchasing and Contracts Manager in the Fleet and Supplies Unit at Derringham Street in Hull. I came in to establish a procurement function for the Force.
“I am now the Police Fleet Manager at the Emergency Service Fleet Management (ESFM) based at Melton’s Special Operation Unit.
“I became the Fleet Manager in 2010 and in August 2014 I was appointed by the Police and Fire Service jointly to lead the newly merged ESFM.
“I found that in the utility business where I worked before that it became a bit soulless. It was all about making money for the company and the individuals there were only interested in making money for themselves. But with the police I feel there is a real sense of purpose. It’s a really dynamic environment and different every day and there’s always a new challenge. So it’s a more stimulating and rewarding job. It’s rewarding to know that you are supporting and helping people in other parts of the organisation that in turn will help the public. My mantra for the ESFM is that we are not just running a garage business, we are running a support service that supports not just our officers but ultimately to support victims of crime.
“There have been discussions for 20 years about the potential merger between the Fire Service and Police to provide this joint service. Leading this ESFM from its beginning has for me been the most rewarding part of my job. It’s a very successful collaboration, it works well and is saving money and has increased the availability of police vehicles, improving efficiency and performance.
“The main thing for me is to bring together the three types of people involved in the ESFM – we have police, fire and private sector mechanics and staff so bringing them all together as a single group, working on the culture of each of these areas to bring them together as one. I will continue to work hard and promote the work of the ESFM.
“In my career the highest point for me is being elected as European Master Logistician in May 2012 by the European Logistics Association (ELA). By profession I am a Logistics Manager and I am a Chartered Member of Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and they track people’s careers, developments and achievements and the ELA accredited me as a Master Logistician which is their highest standard. Being recognised in my career by an external agency not only gives credit to me but to Humberside Police as a whole to show the calibre of people that work within it.
“What I would say to anyone coming in is take every opportunity you can to experience and learn about what the Force does and what colleagues around the Force do. It will help them understand the context of their own role and why they do it. It’s very easy for people to come into a job and not fully appreciate where they fit in to the whole bigger police family.”
What is the ESFM? - The Emergency Service Fleet Management (ESFM) was established in April 2015 and was formed as a 'Teckal' company to sit between Humberside Police and Humberside Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS).
Prior to the establishment of ESFM, Humberside Police and HFRS operated six workshops, which were spread across the county employing 56 employees.
The concept of a joint facility grew from the fact that both Humberside Police and HFRS were operating out of old workshops which required replacement.
Some of the jobs in Humberside Police mean that for safety and security reasons we keep their identity anonymous. We spoke to a female officer who works in a senior covert role for Counter Terrorism Border Policing, Special Branch for Humberside Police.
“Before I joined the police I was an aircraft engineer in the Royal Navy – a job I did for nine years
“My first police job was as a police constable in Grimsby. I was a Sergeant in Community Policing and other units before applying to work within the police training facility in Hull as a student police officer and custody officer trainer. I then worked in many other roles over the years.
“I am currently the senior ports officer in Counter Terrorism Border Policing within Humberside Police. We work as part of a regional collaboration within Counter Terrorism North East. In a nutshell it’s securing our borders.
“Humberside itself has the biggest portal areas in the UK with a lot of freight traffic and footfall including the large passenger ferries going to and from Rotterdam and Zeebrugge so we are very busy in our line of business.
“The best part of working for Humberside Police over the past 20 years has been that there have been so many career opportunities. You don’t have to stay in the same place doing the same thing unless you want to, that does suit some people but there are ample opportunities to develop sideways or with promotion. You never ever get bored.
“For me one thing that has really stood out where I made a real difference in someone’s live was when I was relatively young in service.
“I went to see and interview a woman who had been sexually assaulted. She was from Thailand and because of her culture and beliefs she had no trust whatsoever in authority. When I went to see her was frantic that someone else that did not have consent to touch her had assaulted her in that way. She didn’t want to speak to the police. I managed to build trust and give her the confidence to talk to me and together over the months we got the evidence and information we needed to bring a case against her perpetrator who was charged with three counts of sexual assault against her.
"It gave her confidence in the police to the point that if she ever saw me out and about in the town she would give me a big hug. That was 17/18 years ago and it still remains in my mind. That was face to face and one to one contact with a member of the public that really made a difference.
“The future for me is to remain in the role I am currently in – I only have a further three years in service to go before I retire. I am really happy to work in the counter terrorism world as there is still so much to do. It changes every day and I still have so much to learn.
“I am hoping to retire from the police and look to a new career, something completely different giving me a new focus and a new challenge.
“Career highlights for me are every time I have worked really, really hard to achieve my goal and I get to reach that goal. I feel a massive sense of achievement from my career progression.
“I feel proud of my achievements and want to be an inspirational role model for my children.
“My one bit of advice for any new starter would be to take on new challenges, take yourself out of your comfort zone. Keep developing constantly so you stretch yourself and take on new experiences whenever opportunity presents itself.
“Also, make your own destiny. I have never been given a job yet, I have worked hard for what I have got. When I look back in three years’ time I can honestly say that I will have no regrets.”
Wayne Hedges Deputy Joint Fleet Manager for the ESFM based at Melton spoke to us about his career.
“Before I joined the police I was an Electronics Engineer in Hull. I remember seeing a job advert in the Hull Daily Mail as I was sitting in my little workshop and I thought wow that job looks perfect for me. I couldn’t believe the timing of it all. The company was going into liquidation and I knew I was going to need to look for work.
“I started as a supervisor in the commissioning workshop when I first started for Humberside Police based at Queens Gardens where we had the main vehicle and commissioning workshop for the fleet of vehicles. We used to get standard cars that were converted into police cars, so my first job was to supervise that small unit.
“Cars now come in from the large manufacturers who can much more economically provide fully kitted out police vehicles. We do some specialist bespoke modifications in house but not the initial conversions.
“We constantly review our processes to see if we can make further savings and economies and things may in the future change again, so watch this space.
“The best part of working for the police is that I feel I am part of the family. I am a cog in the wheel that helps cops help the public. I really value that and don’t want to work for a company that is only bothered about their profits and stakeholders.
“It is really important to me that I feel that my job is part of the whole force, that what I do makes a difference.
“The one thing I am particularly proud of in my career is being involved in the original management team that brought this joint ESFM into being here at Melton.
“There was always talk about merging the two services to create a joint workshop and to see this vision come to fruition, to see the savings it’s giving and to see how well we all work together is very rewarding for me.
“Looking to the future there is still a lot to do, I am an engineer by trade but I am still looking for ways to economise and make more efficient working practices to give the best value to the Force and of course the public.
“This sounds a bit sad but, strange as it may seem, the best day of my career was when they opened this facility at Melton. The Queens Gardens workshops were so old and outdated, it was a grim and dirty place to work. Engineering is a true profession and rightly these facilities give our expert staff a great, professional environment to work in.
“If I was to advise a new starter on their first day in the job I would say to try always to embrace change. Change is the only constant thing in the police, it you resist change you will struggle in your career. If you accept change you will get so many more opportunities. I never thought I would be doing what I’m doing now and that’s just by having an open mind and embracing change as it comes along.”
Police Patrol Inspector Craig Sims is now based in Hull but has transferred to Humberside Police from South Yorkshire Police in September 2019, having previously transferred from Notts Police in 2018, we spoke to him about his career.
“Before joining the Police I was a Health and Safety Consultant for M-Tec group of company's which was a training provider for garages and mechanics.
"I started my working life as a British Coal miner and worked down the pit for 10 years!
“My first role as a police officer was as foot patrol within the Neighbourhoods Policing Team, serving the local community.
“I am currently a patrol inspector working from Clough Road in Hull. I love the job and work with a great team of officers.
“Having only just transferred to Humberside Police from South Yorkshire on promotion in September 2019 I have been made very welcome by the local team and the Force as a whole.
“I am on a steep learning curve with lots of new systems and processes to learn as different forces have different ways of working.
“I am proud to have achieved my goal of inspector rank and to be serving the people of Humberside.
“There are lots times where a police officer makes a direct difference to people’s lives so it’s hard to narrow it down to just one occasion.
“Probably it would be my time working in the Offender Management Unit where, with partner agencies, worked closely with people linked to alcohol or drug misuse to try help them turn their lives around.
“Looking ahead to the future it’s important to keep healthy, stay safe and work to the best of my ability.
“The best day of my policing career is probably being accepted to be a police officer as it was always a childhood ambition.
“If I was to give a new starter one piece of advice it would be to work hard, never be frightened to ask how matter on long you have in service. Also be proud to be a Police Officer.”
*The Police Long Service and Good Conduct Medal is a decoration for police officers of the United Kingdom. The Long Service and Good Conduct Medal was first minted in 1951 by royal warrant of King George the sixth, who made the first presentation personally.. To qualify an officer must have completed 20 years loyal police service and been of good conduct. The medal is minted in silver plate and bears the head of her majesty on one side and Britannia holding the scale of justice on the other, with the words ‘for exemplary service’ the officer’s name is inscribed on the rim. The ribbon is blue and white - blue for the affinity with the police and white for purity.