Cabin crew to community support officer

PCSO Carol Boniface
PCSO Carol Boniface

A SOUTH Downs police community support officer went from a high-flier to walking the beat when she decided on a career change.

Carol Boniface has been a PCSO for just over five years, prior to this she worked as cabin crew for a charter airline at Gatwick.

She said: “I became fed up with back to back hotels so decided to make the change and keep my feet on the ground whilst still being able to meet and help the public.”

In her three years working in Storrington, PCSO Boniface has introduced the ‘Shopwatch’ scheme.

“All the traders came on board by giving me their email contact details and I would let them know of any suspicious persons that were in the village trying to either ‘scam’ shopkeepers or generally up to no good,” she said.

“I got very positive feedback from it and am pleased that it’s having an effect.”

There are also neighbourhood panel meetings where members of the public can raise any issues and concerns.

The main topic of these seems to be speeding and dog fouling.

“We try and tackle these as best we can with help from the public but are usually ongoing,” said PCSO Boniface.

Talking to the County Times about what she loves about her job she said the ‘flexibility’, talking to people and helping them.

She added: “I love the area I work in as it’s on the South Downs and I get to see some beautiful places and because the villages are quite small I get to know a lot of people and see most of them regularly whilst on my rounds.

“This gives me a better chance of building up a good rapport with the locals simply because I get seen whilst out and about.”

PCSO Boniface has recently managed to obtain some Police Property Act funding which will be used to go towards a new play park in Meadowside and also funding to help buy equipment for the dementia group that meets in Kingsfield, Storrington.

PCSO Boniface can be contacted via email or by telephoning 07776 286598.