What inspired me most to become a special constable was that I was hearing family, friends and neighbours saying 'There are not enough police officers on the streets'. I looked into the special constabulary to see how I could volunteer my time and help make the county a safer place for all those who live and work here.
Also, I completed 20 years’ service in the military, so I thought volunteering as a special constable would be something I’d like to do in my spare time
I started my special constabulary journey in January 2019 and attested and gained my warrant card in March the same year.
I found the training very interesting along with learning all about Bedfordshire Police and what is expected of me as a special constable. I completed my training over a 17-week period which fitted very nicely into my family and work life. As a close cohort of volunteer officers we all came together and helped each other by absorbing information from one another and were able to test each other before the next training evening. We also had to complete the online training lessons and if we had any questions we could speak with the instructors, who were very understanding and approachable.
I felt part of a policing family and a sense of accomplishment when I was given my warrant card. Been given the opportunity to represent Bedfordshire Police as a special constable and knowing that you have the same powers and reasonability as the regular officers, as well as the duty to uphold the high standards, was a proud moment.
During the usual 9-5 I work as a project deployment manager for Computacenter. And I’m in a unique position where I work from home 90% of the time so I can balance my work/home life very easily. I mainly do my volunteering on Friday nights or weekends.
I mostly volunteer with the London Luton Airport policing unit but due to Covid-19 and the huge reduction in passenger traffic I have been redeployed to volunteer with community teams or on response.
My main duties working both in the airport and now in the community are high visibility patrols to reassure the public, dealing with disruptive passengers in the airport, bolstering the frontline during night time economy duties, warrants and attending 999 or 101 calls.
My favourite moment whilst being a special constable is working closely with other agencies at the airport like TFL, Luton Brough Council, and UK Boarder Agency. We have built a great working relationship with each other, which is essential in the policing world.
By helping one person or one family I feel like I’m making a change for the better. I feel that if you can get the person or family the right help and by talking and listening to someone who needs assistance you are being there and giving back to the community.
If my current employer offered me extra days holiday then I would use them just for the specials, this would enable me to get out into the community a lot more and achieve a lot more too. Currently, I volunteer between 33 to 72 Hours a month as a special constable.
If you were thinking about volunteering…Go for it. If you like volunteering and have skills that Bedfordshire Police would be able to use out in the community then this is the job for you. Joining the special constabulary gives you the opportunity to contribute something to the community. You will also make new friends and learn new skills that you can use back in your work place.