An award-winning North East Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) has described her "surreal" honour to be invited to attend the Coronation of King Charles III.

Middlesbrough PCSO Debbie McClelland, was officially invited to the service at Westminster Abbey on May 6 after she was one of 2,000 people worldwide chosen to attend the once in a lifetime event.

The Northern Echo: The official invite sent to Middlesbrough PCSO Debbie McClellandThe official invite sent to Middlesbrough PCSO Debbie McClelland (Image: CLEVELAND POLICE)

The PCSO, based in the Newport area of the town, also had the chance to meet celebrities and grab a selfie with North East stars Ant and Dec.

PCSO McClelland said: “It was very surreal and something I will never forget. I was seated to the side and could see the two thrones and the Royals coming in to take their seats.

“The ambience and the acoustics in the abbey were amazing; there were tears in the audience as everyone sang ‘God Save the King’.”

She added: “I’m absolutely honoured to have been invited and to have had the chance to witness in person such a huge piece of history.”

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This was not the first encounter PCSO McCelland has had with royalty.

In 2021, she received a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the Queen’s birthday honours for exceptional commitment to the Newport Community.

She also has been awarded the Best PCSO in the country and Cleveland.