A serving Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) from Holsworthy has been thanked as part of a special event in Torrington to recognise 20 years since the role was implemented in the area.

Among those being honoured was PCSO Jess Mceldon, who has 14 years service and is based in Holsworthy.

PCSOs attended the event at Torrington Town Hall on Wednesday, February 22, and were personally thanked by Superintendent Toby Davies – police commander for the North and West Devon Local Policing Area.  

The guests were joined by local inspectors for the area who praised the positive and varied work that PCSOs get involved in every day.

The long serving group have more than 200 years service between them.   

Superintendent Toby Davies, Devon & Cornwall Police Local Commander for North and West Devon, said: “PCSOs are an essential part of our policing team. This was a small way to thank them all for their hard work and dedicated service to assist colleagues across North and West Devon.

“PCSOs play a vital part in assisting with crime prevention, addressing community concerns and keeping people safe.

“They deter anti-social behaviour, provide reassurance, gather intelligence and work with our partners. They play a big part in keeping Devon one of the safest areas to live in the country. I would like to offer my personal thanks to all those who help provide a visible presence in our towns and villages.”

Those who also attended included PCSO Grace Cleverdon who works in Lynton. Grace has clocked up an amazing 24 years service.

PCSO Steve Huxtable, based in Barnstaple, has served with Devon & Cornwall Police for more than 21 years - more than 15 of those he has served as a PCSO. He previously worked as a traffic warden and in a public enquiry office of a local police station. 

PCSO Karen Grant, working in Barnstaple, has served for more than 15 years, PCSO Andy Frisby, working in Braunton, has served for more than 16 years, PCSO Mel Baker – working in Torrington – has reached over 16 years service and her Torrington colleague PCSO Sandra Brown has almost 17 years service. Sandra has also previously worked as a retained firefighter for Devon & Somerset Fire and Rescue Service.

In Tavistock the local community are used to seeing PCSOs Kevin Williams and Seonaid Greenwood out and about. Kevin joined almost 18 years ago and Seonaid will reach 17 years service in August 2023. Also on 17 years service is PCSO Ade Drury who signed up in August 2005 and works in Ilfracombe.   

PCSO Dale Kingdon, who works in Braunton, started in the role in September 2008. PCSO Paul Whitehouse, from the South Molton team, has almost reached 17 years service.     

Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) are celebrating 20 years of delivering neighbourhood policing. The PCSO role was created by the 2002 Police Reform Act and since that time PCSOs have proved their worth.

If you want to know more about PCSOs and think you might like to join the force please visit the Devon and Cornwall Police website for more information http://:devon-cornwall.police.uk