YOUNGSTERS have been slapped in handcuffs, locked away in the back of a Royal Navy Police van and had their fingerprints taken.
But it was all in the name of fun as the RNP made a visit to an after-school club at Ranvilles Junior School in Oldbury Way, Fareham.
The idea for the visit to the Barn Owls club came as Rhianna and Joshua, the children of leading regulator Simon Shepherd, of the Collingwood RNP, go there and kept asking him to come along.
The school is in the centre of the Peak Lane married quarters area in Fareham and as a result many of the pupils there have military ties.
Members of the RNP are responsible for enforcing law and discipline in the navy and marines, but they are not often seen in the outside world.
During their visit the RNP told pupils how they differ from the civilian police, let them have a crack at fingerprinting and showed them around the van they brought with them.
At the end of the session the children were all given gifts of balloons and pencils as a reminder of the fun afternoon.
Heather Hughes, Barn Owls manager said: ‘It was brilliant. It was really interesting to see how they work and some of the children were asking how they could join when they grow up.
‘It was all very hands on and they got the youngsters really involved. They loved trying on the handcuffs and they all wanted to be locked in the back of the RNP van.
‘We try to get as many visitors to come in as possible, it keeps it interesting for the children.
‘We’ve got St John Ambulance coming in to see us soon.’
The club is open to children from the junior school and its neighbouring infant school and typically sees about 20 children from five to 11 taking part in the after-school activities.
Judy Urry from the club added: ‘The kids absolutely loved it, they were all talking about the visit.’
Mr Shepherd said: ‘It was a great opportunity for the community to meet their local RNP.
‘A return visit by the club to HMS Collingwood is already being planned.’
And the RNP is also planning to go back to the school to talk to them about Stranger Danger.