Special constabulary patrol led by special inspector Alisha Ede Image Bedfordshire Police

Bedfordshire Police has announced that since the start of the year, citizens have volunteered over 10,000 hours as special constables.

Special constables are members of the public who volunteer in their spare time as a warranted police officer. They wear the same uniform, have the same powers and work alongside regular officers.

The volunteers spent 6,500 hours patrolling Bedfordshire and completed 1,372 duties, which included making 33 arrests.

The volunteers aren’t limited to helping the general public, they have also been working with regular officers by helping with personal safety training.

Chief Inspector Mark Farrant, who heads up Bedfordshire Police’s special constabulary, said:

“Special constables are a vital resource for the force and we can’t thank our volunteers enough. Their support hasn’t wavered in the past year with all the new challenges we are facing and we are very grateful for all their hard work.

“Our specials make a huge impact on our policing teams and really make a difference to our officers and the community.”

Bedfordshire Police’s special constables work in airport policing, community teams and response units. This year they have provided police presence around the county as well as responding in urgent 999 calls and have dealt with a huge range of jobs from concerns of welfare to domestic incidents.

Special constables start their time at Bedfordshire Police with training sessions during evenings and weekends. Once they pass training and gain their warrant cards, specials move on to response teams.

There is also ongoing work to involve more departments within the force to open up more areas of deployment for volunteers.

Visit Bedfordshire Specials to find out more about being a special constable and read some case studies of life as a special.