A VOLUNTEER police officer is celebrating 10 years of keeping the streets of Braintree safe.

Special Inspector Simon Culling has been working his way up the ranks for the past decade and now leads a team of 40 other officers across the Braintree and Uttlesford districts.

He became a Special Constable in 2008 because he wanted to make a difference and help his local police force.

Culling, who is a business banking manager by day, has dealt with a number of incidents during his time volunteering on the force.

To commemorate reaching a decade he accumulated a list of everything he has done.

He said: "I wanted to share a little about the jobs that we go to as Specials.

"I tried not to focus on just the doom and gloom but at the same time wanted to make it interesting and real.

"I included some funny bits because I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as a Special and there have been numerous amusing moments."

He noted more than 70 things that he has done over the years including: saving a life, running towards a man with a knife instead of away, and doing CPR for half an hour.

And, earlier this year, he was awarded the Best Special Supervisor of 2018 in the annual Special Constabulary awards.

He was also nominated for the Special Constable of the Year award in the 2018 Essex Police force awards.

His advice for anyone thinking of becoming a special is: "Don't be afraid to ask questions; there's no such thing as a silly question and nothing is ever as it first seems."

He tweeted: "I can add “I have seen an open leg fracture” after this last weekend’s duty.

"Colleague and I assisting an injured motorcyclist lying in the middle of the road after an RTC.

"It’s not all about fighting crime. It’s helping people too. It’s making a difference that counts."

Special officers have full policing powers and are trained to deal with the same incidents as paid police officers.

Visit essex.police.uk/specials for more information.