Suffolk's top cop to retire

SUFFOLK'S Chief Constable is retiring after nearly four years at the helm, it was announced yesterday.Alastair McWhirter will leave the post he has occupied since February 2003 at the end of March next year.

SUFFOLK'S Chief Constable is retiring after nearly four years at the helm, it was announced yesterday.

Alastair McWhirter will leave the post he has occupied since February 2003 at the end of March next year.

The 53-year-old joined Suffolk Constabulary from Wiltshire Constabulary, where he was the deputy chief constable.

Under his leadership, Suffolk became the safest county in the country, according to figures collated by the force.


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And, following this success, he oversaw the introduction of Suffolk First For You - an initiative which aims to provide the best policing service.

He said: “I have enjoyed working with a tremendous team of people, who have shared my vision of making our county even safer and providing a top quality service to local people.

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“But I think it is an appropriate time for a new chief constable to lead the force into the next phase of local policing, which centres around the introduction of safer neighbourhood teams.

“I have had a very happy time as chief constable and I am extremely proud of everything that my officers and staff have achieved for local people. I took over a really good force - and I hope that my successor will feel the same.”

Suffolk Police Authority will now begin the recruitment process for a new chief constable.

Authority chair Gulshan Kayembe said: “Alastair has put in a tremendous amount of work and shown great leadership to ensure that Suffolk Constabulary continues to keep our county safe.

“He has tackled everything in his path - including quite difficult issues such as the proposals for amalgamation - with great energy and enthusiasm. We will certainly miss him when he retires.

“Now we will begin the process of finding a successor to continue with our work of ensuring that local people receive the highest quality policing service.”

Mr McWhirter was born in Lanarkshire, Scotland and is a former teacher of English and drama. He has approaching 30 years' service with the police. His career in the service began in 1977 when he joined Hampshire Constabulary. He is married with two children.

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