Fri, 17 Aug 2018
THOUSANDS of visitors are expected to converge on Sulhamstead this weekend as Thames Valley Police (TVP) marks its 50-year anniversary with its annual open day.
Members of the public can get a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to police one of the biggest policing areas in the country on Saturday.
The free event, now in its 12th year, will take place at the force’s training centre from 10am until 4pm, with last entry at 3.30pm.
There will be stalls promoting the different areas of policing and showcasing the work that the force has carried out for the past 50 years.
These will include arena displays where guests will have a chance to meet officers and their horses for a ‘pat and chat’ experience.
The force helicopter will also be on show, with a chance to meet pilots.
Visitors will also be able to learn about different departments, such as the Forensic Investigation Unit and FISO (Force Intelligence and Specialist Operations) and drop by the police museum.
Organisers will also be on hand to give specialist talks on what it is like to be on the other end of 999 and 101 calls and what it feels like to be at the centre of a major crime investigation.
Following on from the success of last year – which saw a record-breaking 8,000 visitors – the fancy dress competition will once again feature.
Children can come dressed in their best police-themed costume to be in with the chance of winning a “fabulous” prize.
TVP will also be raising much-needed funds for two charities.
This year, donations from members of the public will go towards supporting Mind Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire and the Police Dependants Trust.
Chief Con Francis Habgood, who will be opening the day, said: “I look forward to welcoming people from across the three counties that we serve and from wider afield, as we look back at the work of TVP since 1968, alongside more recent achievements and a look to the future.
“With a wealth of stands from departments from across the force and our partners, this is a great opportunity to gain an insight into policing, to get involved and to meet some of our officers, staff and volunteers too.”
This year there will be two entrances for visitors at South Drive and White Lodge.
Car parking is available on a first come, first served basis.
Assistance dogs are permitted, but other visitors with dogs will be turned away and dogs must not be left in vehicles.