Lovedean youngsters get a taste of life as a bobby on the beat

THRILLED Children at Woodcroft Primary School in Lovedean picked up Junior PCSO awards for helping to care for their neighbourhood
THRILLED Children at Woodcroft Primary School in Lovedean picked up Junior PCSO awards for helping to care for their neighbourhood

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CHILDREN learnt what life on the beat is really like during an innovative scheme.

Pupils from Woodcroft Primary School, Lovedean, were picked to become junior Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs).

Waterlooville PCSO Lynda Potter, who led the community project, said the 11-week programme was a huge success.

She said: ‘The idea behind the junior PCSOs is to reduce anti-social behaviour and build relationships between the police, young people and the community.’

The chosen pupils were Skye Douglas, Travis Hibbert, Yazmin Rose Hayman, Holly Marie Brown, Robert Painting, Zak Cowe, Ellie Howie, Joshua Craig and Charlie Savage.

Holly, 11, said: ‘I was really excited to be picked – it was good fun.

‘My favourite part was seeing the police dogs as I’ve got a dog at home.’

Travis, 11, said: ‘It was good to learn about what the police do. I liked doing the litterpick as it made the community look tidy.’

The community programme ended with the children enjoying a day out to Play Zone, in Portsmouth.

They were also given the chance to look around the police control room.

Woodcroft’s headteacher John Webster said: ‘It gives the pupils a sense of community and responsibility.

‘They also had to commit to it as the sessions took place after school.

‘They all seemed to get on well and even enjoyed the mundane tasks.

‘It gave them a whole host of experiences.

‘It was a really important project to instil wider responsibilty as it’s such an important trait for young people to have.’

PCSO Potter added: ‘They all did well. They attended every week and put in a lot of time and effort.’

At the end of the scheme, all the junior PCSOs were presented with a certificate by police inspectors.

Mr Webster added: ‘It was a fulfilling experience all round and the children have built some good relationships.

‘We would absolutely love to do the programme again and are in talks with Lynda for our next year’s Year 6 pupils.’

The project ran from January 16 until March 27.

It is the second similar scheme to take place in the area but the first for Wecock and Lovedean.