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BTP awards ‘top police officer’ accolade

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Chief constable Paul Crowther named the British Transport Police’s (BTP) top officer as the force celebrated its very best work at a ceremony earlier today.

Staff were recognised across 12 different categories at the BTP’s second annual ‘Make the Difference’ awards, which was held at the British Medical Association’s HQ in London.

As well a safety category, there was an award for Investigation of the Year, PCSO of the Year and Community Volunteer.

One of the most prestigious awards was the Whitbread Shield for Police Officer of the Year. The shield was donated to the force in 1966 by author John Robert Whitbread and has been given out a number of times – though not every year – since.

This category recognises an officer who has gone “far beyond what would reasonably be expected of them” and for 2018 the recipient was PC Ian Redpath, who is both a day-to-day firearms officer and an experienced disaster victim identification (DVI) officer.

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In 2017, Ian led a DVI team following the Croydon tram crash and was also deployed in the aftermath of the Manchester Arena bombing and the Grenfell Tower fire.

In his nomination, Ian’s sergeant said: “Cool and calm, Ian shows no sign of being under pressure and consistently makes sound, well-educated decisions where and when they are required.”

Elsewhere, the Railway Chaplains, who provide support and care to all of those who travel and work on the railway, took home the Community Volunteer title.

In 2017 its support was even more prominent in the aftermath of terrorist attacks in Manchester and at London Bridge.

Executive director Liam Johnston said: “To be nominated and shortlisted was a great achievement, but to win was tremendous.

“Because of the nature of our work it is difficult to raise our profile without breaking the confidential relationship we have with the ‘railway family.’ This award is a recognition of the team and the work we do across the United Kingdom.”

A full write-up with details of all the winners from the ‘Make the Difference’ awards ceremony will appear in the July edition of RailStaff. To make a subscription click here.

Read more: Becoming a BTP dog handler