After 17 years leading the county’s Neighbourhood Watch (NHW) and Online Watch Link (OWL), volunteer Chair of Herts Watch Sue Thompson (pictured centre) has retired.
Chief Constable Charlie Hall presented Sue, who was also the Three Rivers NHW district co-ordinator, with a commendation for her outstanding voluntary contribution this week, alongside Superintendent Matt Phillips (pictured left) and Chief Inspector Pete Frost.
Sue has been so successful leading Herts Watch – the umbrella committee for NHW and OWL – that is it one of the best schemes in the country.
Chief Constable Hall (pictured right) said: “I was delighted to present Sue with a commendation for all her hard work and success in developing OWL and NHW across the county, making it one of the strongest schemes in the country.
“We are indebted to her for giving up her free time to really make a positive difference, connecting the police with thousands of households throughout the county and, importantly, helping to reassure our communities.”
Police colleagues Julie Lloyd and Penny Brown from the Crime Reduction and Community Safety Unit also attended the presentation, along with Watch Liaison Officers Derrick Sweeney, Phil Waine and Verity Soued and Broxbourne district co-ordinator Terry Morris.
Sue said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time working with the police and I’m delighted to leave Neighbourhood Watch in such a strong position.
“I feel sad to be leaving work that I have enjoyed doing for so long and more importantly saying goodbye to those people who have become treasured and valued friends.
“It was a truly memorable occasion which I can treasure for many years to come. I still haven’t got over the fact that Charlie Hall thought it was important to leave his desk to come and join us!”
Penny Brown said: “In addition to her strategic and leadership work, Sue has spent many hours at home physically assembling more than 93,000 Neighbourhood Watch packs on our behalf, which has saved the constabulary around £15,000 over the last six years and has saved countless staff hours for us.”
Neighbourhood Watch is a long-established concept of simply looking out for your neighbours and helping the police by being the ‘ears and eyes’ within your local area. It’s about prevention, reassurance and safety.