Started as a magazine for the Special Constabularies of the North West Region, Special Impact has grown to be a national magazine, highlighting the important work carried out by Special Constables and Police Support Volunteers across the country.

Feel free to download the latest and previous editions of Special Impact from our archives below.

Special Impact farewell

A farewell from Tina Shelton, the Editor of Special Impact as she announces the last edition of Special Impact and we look back at 10 years of Special Impact.

Devon and Cornwall Police say "Thank you"

Devon and Cornwall Police say a huge 'Thank You' to all their Special Constables who have worked so hard in 2021 and once again have gone above and beyond. With G7, Summer Policing Demand, music events and sadly the tragic incidents in Plymouth it has certainly been a very busy year.

Surrey Special Constabulary support European Golf Tour at PGA Championship

Surrey Special Constables were out again this year at the wonderful West Course at Wentworth for the BMW Professional Golfers' Association (PGA) Tour. A huge number of visitors made the best of the first major event at Wentworth since 2019 and the glorious sunshine certainly helped rekindle the atmosphere of pre-Covid tours.

Suffolk's Roads and Armed Policing Team welcome the new Special Roads Policing Unit into their team

The new Specials RPU team was launched on 1 July, with the vision to recruit a small number of selected Specials who would be trained to the same standard and level as their regular colleagues.

National Specials Weekend Gallery

Find out how forces across the country celebrated National Specials Weekend, including Essex Police who were awarded The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service.

Avon and Somerset Specials assist with violent disorder

In Bristol on Sunday 21st March 2021 a protest against the new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Court Bill turned violent. The Bridewell Police Station in the centre of the city was attacked, with windows smashed, police vehicles set alight and officers assaulted. Off-duty officers, including Special Constables, were called up for assistance and mutual aid was provided from other forces.

From regular to Special Constable

Special Impact showcases some regular officers that have moved into the role of Special Cosntable; Whilst this is still somewhat of a rarity in the UK, over in the United States, many regulars see it as the right thing to do in terms of giving back to the community.

Special Constable blog on supporting London Ambulance Service

To help relieve unprecedented pressure on the London Ambulance Service (LAS) as Coronavirus hospital admissions soared, police officers have been driving ambulances in the capital.

Volunteering during lockdown - a 'Special' story.

When Tim Davis’ store closed at the start of the first national lockdown, he was able to spend more time helping to support his local community. As well as being manager of an Argos store, Tim is an Essex Police Special Constable in his other life, volunteering his spare time with Harlow Local Policing Team.

Special Constable completes motorcycle response course.

Hugh Smithson, a Special Sergeant on the Roads Policing Unit (RPU) at Avon and Somerset’s Northern RPU base, has been a Special Constable with Avon and Somerset since 2011, working with the Response and Neighbourhood Teams before moving to Roads Policing Unit (RPU) in 2015. He has recently been fortunate enough to complete a three week standard motorcycle response course.

GMP SC escorts BBC News film crew.

On Saturday night, 22 August, Special Inspector Rob Mitchell paraded on for what he thought was going to be a normal (if there is such thing) Saturday night duty. But within minutes of entering the station was given an unusual task – to escort a BBC News Film Crew around Altrincham Town Centre for a story about night-time economy and how it’s been affected by Covid-19.

Surrey Specials Drone Team.

With a dedicated response vehicle and a team of around 15 Pilots & response drivers, Surrey Specials Drone Team have already responded to over 150 incidents in 2020. These range from ‘fast-time’ incidents such as searching for missing persons or suspects, to assisting with ‘slow-time’ enquiries such as intelligence gathering or collision investigation, working in partnership with many teams including Response, Neighbourhoods, Traffic, Firearms, Intel, Warrants, Police Support Units and Rural Crime.

Special Constable swaps policing for the fight against Covid-19.

Joshua Michie not only serves with the Northumbria Police Motor Patrol Team as a Special Constable, but he’s also a trained doctor working for the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

South Wales Special Constabulary contribution

South Wales Police decided it was even more important that National Volunteers’ Week was celebrated this year given the current Covid-19 pandemic. It was an opportunity to acknowledge the valued support of volunteers throughout the year, and to say thank you for the ongoing volunteering which has increased since the pandemic began.

Specials deliver PPE across the country.

Essex Special Constables travelled across the country to collect and distribute almost one million PPE kits to those in need. From healthcare key workers and the public from the spread of Coronavirus.

Cumbria's Special Constable of the Year 2020.

This year Special Constable Anna Merrell was recognised with the Special Constable of the Year Award for her outstanding contribution to policing in Barrow and deploying regularly alongside her section whilst managing to juggle her third year at university and a new job as a carer.

Specials & Employers Covid-19 Support.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council have asked partners on the Employer Supported Policing Scheme to consider providing additional leave to their staff that are Special Constables so they can support the Police Service in managing the impact of the Coronavirus.

Bike loving Special Constable takes to two wheels.

A Leicestershire Police's Special Inspector Jon Mansfield has become the force’s first volunteer Police motorcyclist after passing his training.

Winner of the Extra Mile for South Wales Police Volunteers Award.

Special Inspector Madeleine Clements has donated thousands of hours over an incredible 28 years’ service, and is the longest serving female Special Constable in South Wales Police.

Life saving Special Constables

On Saturday 26 October 2019, between 10:30pm and 11pm, a local boy was minutes away from being engulfed by the floods in the River Weaver when he was rescued in a combined Police and Fire Service operation.

The 2019 International Volunteer Law Enforcement Officer Alliance Training Conference

This year's Volunteer Law Enforcement Officer Alliance (VLEOA) Conference, celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the VLEOA, took place in Orange County, Florida from 9-12 October, with 200 delegates in attendance.

Operation Indemnis team receive south west regional award

Gloucestershire Constabulary's Operation Indemnis Team were honoured for their dedication and outstanding achievements at an awards ceremony in Taunton on Sunday 14 October.

Focus on National Specials Weekend

Find out what Specials around the country did on National Specials Weekend with updates from number of forces.

SYP Special saves a man's life

Special Constable Matt Elliott was off duty and travelling to his full time job at Kier Construction last month when he drove by two people crouched over a man who had collapsed in the street. Matt instantly turned his car around to go and help.

A royal seal of approval won't prompt Mike to "put his feet up".

The Head of West Midlands Police’s Special Constabulary had his own extra special moment after receiving his MBE. Mike Rogers was given the Royal seal of approval in recognition of being a Police Volunteer for almost 50 years.

Northumbria Specials lead the way to crackdown on car crime

A weekend of action run by a group of special Constables saw a massive crack down on car crime in the region. More than a dozen special Constables volunteered their own time to join the Operation Dragoon Team as part of a Drink and Drug Drive campaign.

Meet Bristol Airport Special Constables

The Bristol Airport Police unit is a specialist team of uniformed officers who work at the airport 24/7 to keep it safe and secure for passengers and staff. Late in 2006 it was decided to include members of the Special Constabulary into this team. The first Special to be recruited was Special Inspector Paul Weeks, who has now completed a full 12 years in this post.

Spotlight on a Washington DC Reserve Officer

The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) is the primary law enforcement agency for the US capital and has approximately 3,850 sworn police officers, 650 civilian employees and 100 reserve police officers that play an instrumental role towards the mission of the agency.

National Lord Ferrers Awards 2018

The Lord Ferrers Awards, which celebrated 25 years this year, took place on Tuesday 16 October at Millbank Tower, London, hosted by former BBC news presented Sir Martyn Lewis. The awards celebrate the contribution of Police Support Volunteers, Special Constables, Volunteer Police Cadets and Volunteers supporting the work of Police and Crime Commissioners and businesses partnered in the Employer Supported Policing scheme.

Volunteer Law Enforcement Officer Alliance Conference 2018

The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) of Washington DC hosted the Volunteer Law Enforcement Officer Alliance Conference (VLEOA) which took place on October 17th to 20th 2018. The VLEOA is a public charity organisation that is a leader in the training and support of volunteer, reserve and auxiliary law enforcement officers worldwide.

Specials take to the sky with National Police Air Service

Special Constable Craig Latham and Special Sergeant Ali Faisal spent time with NPAS colleagues learning about the service’s capabilities across Specials Weekend.

West Mercia Special shows great courage

Ben Perry, a Special Constable with West Mercia Police was off duty when he came across a vehicle that had been involved in a collision on the M42, a busy stretch of motorway in the West Midlands. When Ben came across the vehicle he did not hesitate to go and help those who had been in the collision.

Gwent Specials and Welsh Ambulance service scoop a bronze joint award

Gwent Police Special Constabulary, along with the Welsh Ambulance Service, attended Church House in Westminster, London after being shortlisted for the iESE National Innovation and Transformation Award.

Recognising 43 years of service

The year was 1974 and Abba were rocking the Music World, Germany were hosting and winning the FIFA World Cup, Harold Wilson was in his 2nd tenure as Prime minister whilst Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal was unfolding across the Atlantic. On 13th June 1974 Nigel was assigned to Leeds District and worked out of the old Dewsbury Road Police Station;

Special thanked after saving man from burning car

A special Constable has been thanked after he rescued a man from a burning vehicle. Special Constable Steve Muggleton was travelling back to his home in Leicestershire when he spotted a collision between two cars on the motorway.

Cybercrime in the spotlight

Police Volunteers from across North Yorkshire converged in Harrogate on sunday 15 October 2017 for North Yorkshire Police’s first ever Citizens in Policing Conference. 150 special Constables, Police support Volunteers and Volunteer Police Cadets attended the event which focused on cybercrime and how volunteers can play a key role in helping members of the public stay safe online.

My other life

A major campaign to double the number of special Constables in essex is underway and is already showing signs of success.

Special Constable Cyber Team shows extra-ordinary commitment

special Constables from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Cyber Crime unit who helped the NHs during this summer’s cyber-attack have been recognised in a ceremony celebrating their work.

A Special kind of thanks

GMP’s response during the Manchester Arena attack was nothing short of amazing. The reaction from the Force and its wider resources ensured that there was a first responder at the scene in just six minutes and the work that continued beyond that point has been highly commended by the people of Manchester. GMP’s Special Constabulary is one of the teams who deserve a very ‘Special’ thanks.

Celebrating National Specials Weekend

The dates for this year’s National Specials Weekend (NSW) coincided with National Volunteers Week, to ensure that volunteering in a policing context formed part of the wider, national focus on volunteering opportunities. The aim of this annual event is to raise the profile of the Special Constabulary, both in local communities and at a wider, national level.

Specials Firearms Training

Avon and Somerset Special Constables have recently been trained in the use of firearms at the Black Rock Specialist Training Centre, near Bristol.

1st Citizens In Policing LGBT+ Conference

Norfolk Special Constabulary played host for the first National Special Constabulary & Citizens in Policing LGBT+ conference, with the support of the National LGBT+ Police Network and Norfolk Constabulary, which took place on Sunday 19th March 2017, at Norfolk Police Headquarters.

Celebrating Black History Month

October marked Black History Month – an international annual month, celebrating, recognising and valuing the inspirational individuals and events from within the BME communities. Nottinghamshire Police is proud to show its support throughout this important event and recognises value that officers from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities bring to the force.

Jersey Honorary Police

Unlike in the UK where the Special Constabulary is the part-time volunteer section of the statutory police service, in Jersey, the Honorary Police is a parochial elected volunteer service restricted to operating predominately within the con nes of their 12 individual Parishes and is only a liated to the States of Jersey Police for operational e ciencies and the enservicement of the law.

185 years of the Special Constabulary

Up until the 9th Century policing as a whole was very much locally based, but the concept of ‘constables’ was already in place, the most senior being the Constable of a Castle. Beneath him were high constables and petty constables, responsible for overseeing peace and order in local areas. This was still a fairly informal arrangement, however, and nothing like the properly ordered system of police we have now.

What is Cyber Crime?

We have all had to deal with assaults, public order and theft but have you heard of hacking, cyber stalking, denial of service attacks, blackmail or revenge pornography? As technology evolves, so does crime and the Police Service are having to move with the times in order to provide a suitable response to what is becoming an increasing area of law enforcement.

National Specials Weekend 2016

National Specials Weekend is held across the country to promote the work of Specials in local communities and this year ran from Friday 3 June to Sunday 5 June and saw Forces deploying Specials to undertake policing activities across every area of England and Wales.

National Give & Gain Day 2016

This was the fourth year that GMP Specials have taken part in National Give and Gain Day. Give & Gain Day is a celebration of the power and potential of employee volunteering. It sees thousands of people across the globe spend a working day volunteering for good causes in their local community. Since 2008, over 110,000 people in 38 countries around the world have taken part.

Foreword by Richard Jones, Chief Officer, Gwent Police

The aim of SC2016 was to Inspire Volunteering; on Friday night alone we were joined by o cers with over 7000 years of Special Service between them. If that was not inspiring enough we heard from Chief Constable Dave Jones the National NPCC Lead for Citizens in Policing, who updated us on the national survey of volunteers in policing and the latest national strategy work.

SC2016 Charity

The Central beacons Mountain Rescue Team receives £1,600 in memory of founder member and former Special Constabulary Chief Officer, Peter Howells.

Hampshire's Special Constabulary top job 'goes Dutch'

Tom Haye, an international business leader with 24 years of experience as a Special Constable has taken the lead of Hampshire’s Special Constables. Tom started his volunteering career in Hampshire Constabulary in 1991 at Alton Police Station joining a team of 12 Special Constables after moving from his native Holland to the UK in 1986. In his regular day-job job as Managing Director of Broadcast Networks he leads a team of specialist engineers and technicians building studios and mobile broadcast vehicles for international broadcasters like Sky, News International and Fox Sports.

SC2016 Update

Gwent Police, on behalf of the Welsh region, are pleased to be the host for the 2016 Specials Conference, which takes place 22 – 24 April in Chepstow. It is hoped that the conference will provide delegates with the opportunity to develop their knowledge and expertise, allow opportunities to meet new colleagues and exchange good practice with other forces.

Celebrating 100 years of Women in Policing

The Home Secretary hosted a celebration event to mark the contribution of women in policing to coincide with the centenary of the first woman police officer. The event took place on 2nd December 2015 at the British Library in London with an audience to include officers from all ranks of the service and staff members. Special Constables attended the event and you can read more about six of these dedicated officers.

UK's first Special Constable dog handler

Special Inspector John Power is a double-lung transplant recipient and has overcome cystic fibrosis to become the UK’s first Special Constable dog handler with his own dog purchased by Bedfordshire Special Constabulary.

Cheshire Special receives Commendation from Merseyside Police

On Tuesday 28th July, Special Constable (SC) Paul Lawton received a Commendation at a Merseyside Police Awards evening. SC Lawton received his commendation for "professionalism, courage and initiative in the apprehension of a male committingan offence of theft in Liverpool, whilst off duty".

Cross Border Operation Targets Rural Crime in Dorset

A team of 40 Special Constables from Dorset Police, Wiltshire Police and Hampshire Constabulary patrolled 1400 square miles of rural areas, delivering a two day cross-border operation to help prevent and detect rural crime.

National Specials Weekend

National Specials Weekend, organised to promote the Special Constabulary in local communities, saw thousands of Specials take to the street to undertake policing activities relevant to local needs.

Hampshire Constabulary SC's in the Marine Unit

At the beginning of 2012, Hampshire Constabulary’s Special Branch Marine Unit, advertised three six month trial postings for Special Constables to supplement the nine regular Police Constables and one sergeant that make up the unit. All four special Constables are now fortunate enough to be permanently posted to the Marine unit, contributing far in excess of the minimum duty hours.

Top Special appointed in North Wales

A former Police Officer with over 30 years' experience has taken up the mantle of North Wales Police Special Superintendent. Mark Owen, who retired as a Chief Inspector from the Force three years ago, joins the North Wales Police Special Constabulary as the new Superintendent. His regular job is now as a civilian member of staff and is one of two of North Wales Police's Missing Persons Coordinators.

GMP Specials help out at drugs raid

Bolton Division has praised the help of 16 Special Constables who supported the regulars with carrying out a raid on a Bolton pub. Officers executed a warrant at The Victory pub in Chorley Old Road — one of several visits Police made to pubs and clubs on a recent Friday night.

Top Essex Special is awarded MBE

Thirty-four years of service as a Special Constable has been rewarded with an MBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours list. Derek Hopkins, Essex Special Constabulary Assistant Chief Officer has been honoured for his service to the local community both as a Special Constable and as a leader and instructor in scouting and helping with local fundraising and social groups.

Response Rider receives royal recognition

Services to law enforcement and the public through the Metropolitan Police service and St John Ambulance have led to a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) award for Special Paul Harrison in the New Year’s Honours List. Paul, who is a qualified response motorcycle officer, has been a Special Constable for 26 years and was also recognised for his service with st John Ambulance London (Prince of Wales) District where he helped set up the paediatric retrieval service and motorcycle response unit.

Special Impact Goes International

Special Impact would like to thank Special Inspector Andy steel from GMP for providing us with a diary of his recent visit to Ontario, Canada, where he was able to meet with Police Auxiliaries. Read on to hear the differences between them and the UK Special Constabulary.

ASSCO Conference

The 26th & 27th of September 2014 saw the Association of Special Constabulary Chief Officer (ASCCO) conference taking place at the College of Policing, Ryton. The conference theme was “Further professionalising the special Constabulary”, focusing on Retention, Deployment and Diversity in Leadership.

Lord Ferrers Awards

Outstanding special Constables and Police support Volunteers received awards at the House of Commons on 23rd June. Home Secretary Theresa May and Policing Minister Damian Green attended the awards ceremony to recognise the dedication and hard work of special Constables and Police support Volunteers.

Queen's Award for Voluntary Service

Kent Special Constabulary is the first (and only) Special Constabulary to have been recognised for their excellence by HM The Queen through the award of the most prestigious recognition there is for a voluntary group.

Foreword by Michael Banks - DCC - Durham Constabulary

A review of the conference by Michael Banks, Deputy Chief Constable Durham Constabulary and National Lead for the SC National Strategy and Citizens in Policing portfolio.

OperaOpening speakers highlighted reasons to be proud of the SC

The welcome address on Friday evening was given by Sir Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police and National ACPO lead for the Special Constabulary, who opened by saying how excited he was to be at another Specials conference. Sir Peter said "The last 10 years have seen a steady growth in the sheer professionalism of the Special Constabulary day in and day out."

National certificate for tenacious Special Constable

Carly Henfrey, a Nottinghamshire Special Constable, who was seriously injured in a hit-and-run collision while on duty, has received national recognition for her determination to return to work.

Operation Hawk gets it talong into arrest thirty

Specials only fugitive team from Kingston-upon-Thames make thirtieth arrest of one of the London Borough’s ‘most wanted’.

Merseyside Specials do something extra Special for charity

Acting Chief Officer Michael Morgan and Chief Inspector Julie Ferns-Morgan of Merseyside Police Special Constabulary completed the Global Adventure Great Wall of China Charity Trek, raising money for The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation.

Specials Senior Officer Conference

Senior Special Constabulary officers from across England and Wales converged on Bramshill for their Annual Conference in October 2013, which was supported by The College of Policing and sponsored by DutySheet.

Life saving Sussex Specials

Two Sussex Special Constables saved the life of a pensioner who collapsed in the back of a car. Special Constable’s Alex Brown and Robert Teear came to the aid of an unnamed 84-year- old whose heart had stopped in the back of his daughter’s car.

Neighbourhood Policing to be Met Specials primary focus in future

Changes to the policing approach in the Metropolitan Police Service will see Specials primarily assigned to new Neighbourhood Policing Teams with local policing priorities. In line with the Commissioner’s vision for Total Policing the MPS has established a new approach to local policing called the Local Policing Model (LPM).

Lord Ferrers Awards 2013

The Lord Ferrers Awards 2013 was held in Westminster on 24 June.These annual national awards provide an excellent opportunity to recognise the wide range of skills that both Special Constables and Police SupportVolunteers bring to policing throughout England and Wales.

Do you lead a double life?

Some might say that senior corporate performance officer Chris Smith, does indeed lead a double life. By day he’s a council employee but at night and on the weekends, he dons dark clothing and walks the streets of Hereford on the lookout for wrong doers, ensuring that local residents remain safe and secure.

Met Specials Take-Over

The Met has pioneered what is believed to be a national first after more than a dozen specials attached to the Traffic Operational Command Unit ran a shift themselves.

Essex Specials Day of Action

Operational Support Group Special Constables assisted with a Day of Action by leading 'Operation Witchcraft'.

Special Constable and Police Support Volunteer Awards 2012

The GMP Special Constabulary Gala Awards 2012 took place on Sunday 25 November, at Sedgley Park Training Centre. Chief Inspector Paul Cretney, Cumbria Constabulary, wins the Ferrers Trophy with the Eastern Region winning the Team Award for Mutual Aid.

Celebrating 35 years of service

Special impact interviews Special inspector Mabel bamber from Greater Manchester Special constabulary who celebrates 35 years of service this year.

Special Constables come together for a development day

Ellie Acton from Cheshire's Special Constabulary was among several officers and colleagues from many different forcees who delivered a presentation as part of the Special Constable development day.

London 2012

Specials Inspector Neil Gitton gives his account about his part in the Olympic Games/Cheshire blogging.

Operation Jersey

320 Specials from 8 different forces on Mutual Aid help police an EDL & UAF march in Bedfordshire.

Diary of a Surrey Patrol

We follow a Thursday night shift with Surrey Special Inspector Chris Chapman.

SC2012 Specials Conference

Find out about the keynote addresses and speeches at the 2012 Special Constabulary Conference, hosted by Greater Manchester Police.

Diary of an event volunteer

Jade Preece, GMP Police Support Volunteer shares her first volunteering experience as Events Organiser for SC2012.

Chief Officer Spotlight

Ellie Acton Chief Officer of Cheshire Special Constabulary gives Impact her account of what it was like when she joined the service.

Specials with Wings

Police will have a Special eye in the sky as new initiative takes off in Cumbria.

Guest Forces - Hertfordshire

Across Hertfordshire, 26 appointed Rural Special Constables are making a positive impact to help their local community in both reducing crime and bringing those offenders responsible for crime to justice.

Guest Forces - Thames Valley Police

During the 2012 Olympics, Thames Valley Police is one of the forces hosting a venue. Dorney Lake In Buckinghamshire will be hosting the rowing and canoeing events during both the Olympics and the Paralympics events.

Specials Respond to Disorder

Specials from the North West respond to the civil disturbance that spread from London in August 2011.

The Special Constable and Police Support Volunteers Awards 2011

Awards were presented by Home Office Minister Damian Green at a ceremony held on 16 June at Church House Conference Centre in Westminster.

Special Impact Launch

Welcome to the first ever edition of Special Impact. A foreword by Sir Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police.

Florida Highway Patrol

In November 2010, four Special Constables from GMP visited Florida Highway Patrol Auxiliary, a volunteer arm of the Florida Highway Patrol, to experience differences in how officers of the FHPA are utilised and variations in methods of road policing.