The Wokingham Paper

Former Thames Valley Police chief named in New Year's Honours list

Chief Constable Francis Habgood
Chief Constable Francis Habgood

THE FORMER chief of Thames Valley Police has received a knighthood in the new year’s honours list.

Francis Habgood led the force over the past few years, overseeing Royal weddings and the visit of the American leader Donald Trump, which saw many protests.

His citation also praises his support for charities including DrugFAM, which is based within the borough and supports families affected by drug addiction.

It adds: “Under his aegis, the introduction of mental health nurses to custody suites was a major advance. At regional level he took on overall responsibility for Counter Terrorism policing for the South East Region which ran the successful Salisbury poisoning investigation.

“As Chair of the CC’s Reference Group for the ESN Programme, he has been an essential interface between Policing and Home Office delivery of the programme to replace the existing emergency services Airwave system, providing challenge but also support and guidance.

“He is a keen supporter of the Care of Police Survivors having taken part in the London to Stratford cycle ride twice in support.

“In TVP’s 50th anniversary year he raised funds for MIND and hosted engagement events to raise awareness of both charities, as well as charity DrugFAM, to support families affected by drug addiction.”

He is not the only top cop to be recognised in the honours list.

Chief Constable Paul Crowther of British Transport Police has been awarded a CBE.

He said: “It has been the greatest honour to serve BTP for the past 40 years, and to be the Chief since 2014. Throughout my time at the force, I have seen staff and officers across all ranks tackle and overcome such enormous challenges.

“Not only have they responded to acts of terrorism, or witnessed devastating scenes following train crashes, they’ve also brought violent offenders to justice and helped protect vulnerable people from harm.

“While this is an individual award, it is clear to me that this honour is shared amongst all the hard-working men and women at BTP who carry out tremendous work every day.”

And Detective Superintendent Nigel Doak, Thames Valley Police, was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal for his service.

A professor of climate science at the University of Reading, Professor Edward Hawkins, was awarded an OBE for his work in climate science and science communication.

Historian Professor John Darwin, who was a lecturer at the University of Reading in the 70s and 80s, was awarded a CBE for his services to the study of global history.

Finchampstead-based Lesley Rudd received a BEM for her services to the  UK

Energy Markets and Clean Growth. She is currently the chief executive officer of the Sustainable Energy Association.

Col Clare Phillips received a CBE. She was commanding officer of the SEAE regiment, which was based with REME in Arborfield. Her first assignment in 2001 saw her deployed to Bosnia

Col Phillips returned to REME as a member of the Officer Recruiting Team. She became REME Corps Colonel in September 2016.  In November 2017 she returned to the Army Personnel Centre in the role as Colonel Career Management (Ops).

She still has links to the garrison: in September last year, she became vice-chairman of the REME Charity.

And elsewhere, the actor Wendy Craig, famous for her roles in comedy shows such as Butterflies, was awarded a CBE for services to drama and charity. She lives in nearby Cookham.

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