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Behind the initiative was Detention Officer Brian Kelly, who has worked for the Force for 33 years.
“We’ve all had a rotten year because of Covid so I thought it would be nice to go into a school and put smiles on the children’s’ faces. I chose Pinehurst Primary School in Anfield because I have strong family connections with the area and it’s in our Police catchment.”
“This is a first for me but once I came up with the idea it just grew. My colleagues really stepped up to the plate, helping me raise more than £250 for Christmas goodies we could deliver to the school. But when I learned that my colleague Custody Officer Sergeant Karl Bennett was also an author of children’s books, I had to get him involved. So we included one of his books, ‘Robbie the Bobby and the case of the missing pies’, for each of the children in the year class in our pre-Christmas drop-off.”
Last Wednesday (16 December), Karl gave a special Zoom reading of his latest book with the children, following which Brian made a socially distanced visit to the school along with Chief Inspector Garvey-Jones, Case Development Officers Angela White and Millie Wood, who delivered a quantity of selection boxes for the children and copies of ‘Robby the Bobby’ and mince pies for the teachers.
Brian added: “The teachers were really pleased and delighted that we chose their school.”
“Karl has now written seven children’s books but this is the first to be published. The book was about some pies go missing from the local bakery in West Derby and Robbie the Bobby investigates. Whiskey, the Police dog is brought in but all Whiskey wants to do is eat the sausage rolls! The book is based on a former colleague who was a real character and is meant as a piece of fun and to be as interactive as possible.”
“Brian is a Covid super hero, putting others before himself and going the extra mile. Brian and the custody staff raised funds which enabled them to give a little something back to our communities. Everyone needs a little cheer this Christmas following a year of Covid misery.
“The visit to Pinehurst School by my staff put a big smile on all the children young faces which was nice to see. The teachers also enjoyed the visit. I am very proud of Merseyside Police’s Community First approach, and my team have showed their appreciation to the communities we serve.”
“It’s lovely to know that the children will have a book to read over the Christmas holidays! Reading is always a priority at Pinehurst and we encourage children to read as much as they can. It is great for our school to make links with Merseyside Police too.
“I would like to thank Brian, along with anyone who donated any money and Merseyside Police, for supporting this wonderful idea, which can help put a smile on our childrens’ faces over Christmas by enjoying their new book!”
Here’s a link to a short You Tube video, capturing the joy and excitement of the children at this special event https://youtu.be/Zb-o5K8YCe0
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