A POLICE officer completed his last shift on the beat this week after 30 years of service.

Inspired by his brother, who was a serving officer, PC Ellis Hutchinson joined Sussex police in 1990 after the force held a recruitment campaign in Newcastle.

The Northern Echo:

After two years, he transferred to the armed counter terrorism team in Gatwick and described the time as “interesting” courtesy of the IRA and PLO, along with the general public.

For family reasons, PC Hutchinson transferred back to the North-East and joined Durham Constabulary in November 1996.

He worked across Newton Aycliffe and Spennymoor and described it as “great days with some real characters”.

After qualifying as a public order instructor, PC Hutchinson began training staff at the old Newton Aycliffe hospital site and, as well as being on the on-call tactical team, he joined the armed protection team.

The Northern Echo:

Later he joined the shift at Stanley, Weardale and Crook as well as completing a stint with Comms.

Since 2011, PC Hutchinson has been part of the Crook and Weardale Beat Team, and was responsible for the Wolsingham area.

He said: “I’ve got many memories of incidents I’ve been to. Glider crashes, explosions, murders and countless RTCs.

“A lot of them aren’t pleasant but that’s the job we do.

"Day-to-day policing can be mundane and frustrating sometimes but when you know you’ve really helped the job satisfaction is great.”

The Northern Echo:

PC Hutchinson completed his last shift on Wednesday was given a fond farewell by his colleagues.

He is now looking forward to spending quality time with his family and travelling again, once that is possible.

Weardale and Teesdale Neighbourhood Inspector Ed Turner said: “Ellis is the epitome of your good old-school bobby and it has been a real privileged to work with him.

“He will be a great miss not only to the residents he served for so long but his friends and colleagues in the force – it is the end of an era for us as a team.

“I wish him all the best as he embarks on a new chapter.”

In a message to successful applicants during a recent recruitment drive, PC Hutchinson said: ​“You are joining one of the biggest teams in the world. It will be hard, exhausting and sometimes traumatic but you will work with some of the finest people you will ever meet.

"You will make a difference to people’s lives and that’s what makes it all worthwhile.”

Durham Constabulary is taking application for new officers, until 5pm Friday, June 12. For details visit durham.police.uk