Six special constables mark almost 150 years of service
Six special constables who have served almost 150 years between them have been honoured at a special ceremony.
Special Ch Insp Michael O’Mahoney, Special Supt Derek Grey, Acting Special Chief Officer Clint Sharp, Special Supt Stephen Dobbs, Special Constable Tracey Bateman and Special Sgt Martin White have volunteered with Bedfordshire Police for 149 years between them.
All six received awards for long service and good conduct at police headquarters in Kempston.
One of the volunteers, Special Ch Insp O’Mahoney, joined up in 1968 and has served non-stop since – making him the longest-serving special constable in Bedfordshire Police history.
Acting Special Chief Officer Sharp said: “It’s a real honour to present these awards to members of the Special Constabulary who have dedicated their time and have shown real loyalty to their county.
“Our volunteer police officers play a vital part in policing the county, supporting their regular colleagues and carrying out a variety of duties – and the awards I presented reflect their dedication to the force, and to protecting the public.”
Turning to Special Ch Insp O’Mahoney in particular, he said: “This is an exceptional achievement and shows true dedication and commitment to volunteering, but also to the communities of Bedfordshire. During his time as a Special he has been regularly seen working operational duties on the Friday and Saturday evenings as well as supporting all community events.
“In his more mature years, Michael has taken a non-operational role and now supports the recruitment process of new officers.”
He was given a commendation by the county’s deputy chief constable Garry Forsyth.
On the same evening, three new special constables formally joined the force.
Special constables work out of the force’s rural stations, help with nighttime work in the towns and take part in specialist teams like the roads policing, dog handling, football and airport units. They have the same powers and privileges as regular officers, and to commit at least 16 hours a month to the role. The Beds force has about 250 of them.
To find out more about becoming a special constable, see bedfordshire.police.uk.