Tower of London Celebratory Event
In 1919 The National association of retired Police Officers was formed to represent the views of retired officers and safeguard the rights of members promoting measures for their welfare and pensions.
I am honoured to have taken over the role of Secretary for the Chelmsford Branch of NARPO in this historic year 2019 and to have been part of the Celebrations.
On Thursday 13th June, a special celebratory dinner was held at the Tower of London to mark NARPO’s 100 year anniversary. Members from most branches across the country attended the event which included a drinks reception and four-course dinner.
The Chelmsford branch was represented at this event by myself and my husband Andrew, together with Darren Jones and his daughter Emma.
Like many people attending we decided to make a weekend of it and booked a couple of nights in a hotel close by (Hotel Indigo on Minories which is a bit quirky and highly recommended).
We took a taxi to the venue, however, at that time of the evening it would have been quicker to walk, not to mention a lot cheaper, especially since it dropped us off at the disabled entrance and they wouldn’t let us in that way!
We eventually made it to the correct entrance and were just wondering how we would find Darren and his daughter with over 500 people attending when they just appeared walking towards us from the opposite direction, so we walked in together.
The event was held in the Pavilion, which is essentially a large marquee situated on the Northern side of the Tower. The marquee has been designed to fit in with its historic surroundings, with a magnificent regal interior that opens out onto the Tower’s gardens.
Once inside the venue we were invited to have drinks and canapés whilst looking for our places on the table plan.
Our table (Table 1) was well positioned on the left-hand side with a good view of the stage and lectern, and we noted we would be sitting with the Staffordshire branch. We shared a very interesting evening with this branch with the usual array of ‘funny stories’ being told.
Mr Brian Burdus, the President of NARPO, gave the welcome speech followed by Grace read by The Chaplain to the Police Service of England and Wales. We were then treated to a 4-course meal with a fine selection of wine.
The highlight of the evening was an address by HRH Princess Anne, who has been the Patron of NARPO throughout the centenary year.
She spoke about the value of contributions made by volunteers in local branches and noted how core values have remained pretty much unchanged over the last 100 years. In particular, the safeguarding of members rights, welfare and pensions.
All of the attendees received a commemorative medal which had been commissioned as part of the Centenary celebrations.
Following the meal we wandered around the venue meeting other NARPO members, including those from West Yorkshire who had been sat with our neighbours from Colchester.
I’m pleased to say that Chelmsford Branch managed to last for the duration and we were among the last to leave at around midnight.
It was a pleasure to represent Chelmsford Branch at this memorable occasion and definitely an evening to remember.
House of Lords Celebratory Event
On Wednesday 17th July The Chairman Bob Good and I attended a reception at the House of Lords as part of the 100th Anniversary Celebrations of NARPO.
A pleasant couple of hours at lunchtime were spent chatting with members of other Branches from across the country, whilst enjoying a glass of wine and some canapés on the terrace looking at the Thames and the London Eye.
The reception was hosted by the Baroness Harris of Richmond. Short speeches were given by Baroness Harris, Brian Burdus, NARPO President, Louise Haig MP, Shadow Minister of State for Policing, and Steve Edwards, NARPO CEO.
The event was well attended, including representatives from the Colchester Branch.