Port People- Constable Beggs

Port People: a look at the wide variety of careers available at Belfast Harbour. This month we speak to Belfast Harbour Neighbourhood Police Constable Beggs.
Name: Constable Beggs
Position: Belfast Harbour Neighbourhood Police Constable

1. What does your average working day entail?

The role of a Neighbourhood Constable in the Belfast Harbour Police is to contribute to the everyday policing of the Belfast Harbour Estate. This means we spend time out and about engaging with tenants and those which use the Harbour Estate on a regular basis. This reassures the public and creates a pleasant environment for everyone to enjoy 24 hours a day. We also spend time talking to those our work affects and take forward their concerns and ideas as best we can.

2. What qualifications are required for your job?

In order to apply for the position of a Constable in the Belfast Harbour Police you have to have a minimum of 5 GCSEs at Grade C or above and a full current clean driving licence. People skills are high on the list of criteria as well as the ability to think on our feet and be problem solvers.

3. What other skills do you need in your role?

In this job you need a calm but assertive approach and good communication skills- a second language is very helpful, especially in the Harbour Estate. You also need to be able to deal with people in difficult situations, provide support at large public gatherings, such as sports events and concerts and be confident gathering intelligence from the community.

4. What’s the best thing about your job?

The best thing about my job is the amount of self-satisfaction I feel when I achieve a satisfactory result when dealing with a problem. I also enjoy communicating with people from all walks of life as one of the main roles for a Neighbourhood Constable is attending meetings and forums with stakeholders and residents.

5. What’s the most common question people ask when they find out what you do?

The most common question I am asked is, “Are you not frightened being a Policeman?” My answer to them is that sometimes I feel for my safety and that of my colleagues but when you are in a difficult situation, training kicks in and you just get on with the job at hand. Police Officers today are very well trained and supplied with the necessary equipment to deal with any situation but the amount of force used must be proportionate and fair to the threat as it presents itself. There is also a great sense of comradeship within the Police and someone is always watching your back.

6. What advice would you give to those considering a career in your profession?

I would encourage anyone to have a career in the police. There are some very good prospects and opportunities. I joined in 1986 and have been very fortunate to have worked in different departments doing all kinds of police jobs, so my advice would be to pick the job within the police that is most suited to you and give it your best.