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Special constabulary chief officer awarded Queen Birthday Honour

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Ben Clifford

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British Transport Police’s most senior Special Constable has been handed an honour in The Queen’s Birthday 2018 Honours List.
Ben Clifford, who is the Chief Officer of BTP Special Constabulary, has received a BEM (British Empire Medal) for services to policing. 
Ben joined BTP’s special constabulary back in January 2006, being posted to London Victoria and then Croydon. He quickly progressed through the ranks becoming Special Chief Inspector for the London South Area.
In April 2014 he temporarily became the Chief Officer for the force’s specials, and was appointed substantively to the post in November 2014. As Chief Officer, he leads the force’s 340 special constables nationwide.
Like all special constables, Ben’s contribution to BTP is voluntary and is on top of his full-time employment as a an academic geographer lecturing in City Planning at University College London. Ben regularly takes his volunteering work up and down the nation, visiting teams across England, Scotland and Wales. 
BTP Specials play a significant role in the everyday policing of Britain’s railways. From patrolling stations, tram networks and the London Underground, they’ve also contributed to major events such as Notting Hill Carnival, Champions League Final in Cardiff and New Year’s Eve celebrations. 
Special Constables have also proved invaluable during the heightened threat level in 2017 following the devastating terrorist attacks in Manchester and London. 
Chief Officer Ben Clifford, said: “It is a huge privilege to receive this honour and it came as a total shock! Since day one at the Special Constabulary, I have enjoyed every second. It hasn’t come without it’s challenges and juggling this role with my full-time employment can be tricky. 
“However, the work we do as police officers can be extremely rewarding. We see the best and worst in people, helping those in crisis through to arresting criminals, no shift is ever the same. 
“The last couple of years have been particularly rewarding for me, seeing a growth so that BTP’s specials have been volunteering over 100,000 hours to policing per year. Every day our Specials are out on the network and are contributing hugely to keeping the travelling public safe – I am proud to be a part of this incredible team.
“I love what I do, and I definitely see myself volunteering as a special constable for a few more years yet.”

Chief Constable Paul Crowther, said: “Ben’s contribution to BTP and policing of the railways has been outstanding. Ben has given over 11 years’ service to BTP’s Special Constabulary – firstly as a Special Constable and since 2014 as BTP’s Special Chief Officer providing inspirational leadership to our Specials, who add extraordinary value to our Force.  

“In the last 12 months alone, Ben volunteered more than 700 hours to policing, and his wider team of specials have contributed more than 100,000 hours policing the railway and serving the travelling public.  

“Ben’s commitment and focus has truly made a real difference . I am immensely proud of his work and the work of our Special Constabulary. This honour is well deserved.”

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