THERE might traditionally be five gold rings at Christmas, but at Dyfed-Powys Police there will be just one gold commander taking the helm.
Powys Divisional Commander, Superintendent Jon Cummins will be on call for 24 hours over Christmas Day. This means he will be responsible for any firearms, public order, critical or major incidents across the force area during that time.
He said: “As I’m the Powys superintendent I will be working early morning to chair the Powys daily management meeting (DMM) with the management team, where we will review crime and incidents overnight, or any ongoing incidents, and I will then later chair the whole force DMM.
“Both of these, I hope, will be short meetings as I don’t anticipate any critical incidents or investigation – but you never know, there have been major incidents in the force area on Christmas Day in the past.
“After DMM and meeting with staff, I will later go home and revert to being on call, unless anything is on-going and requires my oversight. I’ll be covering the whole force, not just Powys, as gold commander.”
This is not the first time Mr Cummins, who transferred to Dyfed-Powys Police from The Met in 2014, has worked on Christmas Day – in fact he’s been on duty for the majority of them in his time as a police officer.
He’s hoping that this year he will still be able to spend the majority of the day with his wife and two children, although there will be the anticipation that he would be called in in the event of a major incident.
“I have probably worked eight out of the last 10 Christmases,” he said. “I always thought that when I didn’t have kids that I would volunteer to work Christmas Day so I could have the payback when I did have a family. Unfortunately you move on to different roles in different teams so you don’t end up working with the same people who can offer that return.
“My children will probably be up at 5.30am because they’re so excited about Christmas, so we’ll open our presents early and then I’ll come in to work. As long as everything is ok, I hope to be back at home in time for dinner.”
Mr Cummins added that for the officers on shift over Christmas there will still be a sense of festivity as they will try to celebrate together in the morning.
“A lot of officers will have a Christmas breakfast together,” he said. “They will get together and someone will be nominated to cook a fry up for them. We’re all in it together.
“When you become a police officer you know you could end up working on Christmas Days and other holidays. We are here to serve the public, and our role doesn’t stop for Christmas.
“We hope everyone has a happy and trouble-free day, but please remember we are here if you need us.”
If you need police assistance over Christmas, call handlers will be available 24/7. Call 999 if there is an immediate threat to a person or property, or 101 to make a non-urgent report. You can also email email@example.com for slow-time, non-emergency queries or advice.