Police Advanced Advisor
I was a relatively late starter to motorcycling but had been driving at an advanced level for many years. I got round to passing my motorcycle test in 2010 at the age of 33.
I have always been an avid fan of motorcycle racing, long before I cocked my leg over a motorcycle. My love for bikes was from a young age, as I’d grown up around motorcycles that my father owned. Because of my dad’s influence and being in that environment, it was only a matter of time until I followed in his footsteps.
My passion initially was to only ride motorcycles for pleasure. I didn’t have any intentions to ride vocationally. However, once I passed, I did ride a motorcycle all year round and in all weather conditions. I believe this way of riding really does improve your planning, general ability and motorcycle control.
Since passing my motorcycle test in 2010, I have ridden a variety of motorcycles. I started off on a smaller machine to learn the ropes and to gain valuable experience, but my love for bikes grew and so did the bikes that I owned.
My first bike was a Kawasaki ZZR600, which was a great machine and gave me a lot of pleasure. But as the passion and confidence grew, I migrated to a Honda Fireblade 1000RR. This was also a fantastic bike that taught me control and restraint.
Anyone can ride fast in a straight line but riding a powerful sports bike really teaches you how to tame the beast. In my opinion, every rider should learn restraint. They must be able to plan their ride with purpose and give courtesy to other road users.
My current motorcycle is a Kawasaki Z1000SX, I ride this all year round and find it a great all round machine. It is the preferred motorcycle for many police riders out of the work environment, as it does everything you need a motorbike to do.
To enhance my skills and ability, I have also completed a number of off-road training days. I have enrolled on a number of courses that have enabled me to ride various off-road motorbikes. The courses have been in the Welsh mountains, which are demanding and challenging. You can’t help but learn when riding in an alternative environment and it really has benefited my riding skills in general.
I became a Police Officer in 2002 and my aim was to ultimately be a traffic officer. This would follow in the footsteps of my father who has finished his service in this role.
My early career started as a response officer. Whilst in this role I had my first taste of tutoring a number of students. I knew that this is where my vocation would take me as I found this role hugely rewarding.
I gained a lot of experience and knowledge during this role. Watching people learn and develop new skills gave me a sense of achievement and a huge sense of satisfaction knowing I was passing on knowledge.
As my role developed, I took my first advanced driving test in 2006. I passed that course and my career was moulded into driving at a high standard. A number of further high-level advanced driving courses followed and as a result I knew that my new skills would take me onto motorcycles.
Because I had been a keen all year round biker, the natural stepping stone was to follow the same path on the bike that I had taken in the car. As a traffic officer, the role is diverse and moving onto motorcycles enabled me to progress to become a police motorcyclist.
I passed the basic Police motorcycle course in 2012. This was a great course for me to learn new skills but as an advanced driver the principles and planning are very similar.
The next challenge came in 2014 when I took the next step in progression and passed the Police Advanced Motorcycle Course. This was a challenge as it is a demanding and arduous course. Not everyone makes it and to pass the course is regarded as a great achievement.
For me this was an honour and the pinnacle of all the learning and applying the skills I had acquired in previous courses. Police motorcyclists are trained and nurtured over a period of time, their development is slow and methodical and is probably the best training in the world.
The progression allows you to enrol on further advanced courses. I have since been on a number of courses and qualified as a National Protection Car Driver and also a National Protection Motorcycle Rider.
These qualifications have allowed me to work all over the Country performing these high level roles and escorting a number of high-profile VIP’s.
Just a few of these deployments have been G7 in Cornwall, D Day centenary in Portsmouth and London. Also, the G7 in Scotland, Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and the Queens Funeral in London. I am highly honoured in performing my role as a Police Motorcyclist at prestigious events.
At present I have over 16 years experience and service as a Traffic Officer in numerous roles. The responsibilities are varied and as a result of my early tutoring opportunities, I decided that I wanted to pass on my experience and knowledge.
The time was right for me to pass on my skills to future trainees within the police force. I applied for and was successful in being given a role in the West Midlands Driver Development Unit.
I have passed my Car Instructor Course, which enables me to teach students to drive Police vehicles in response conditions. This is high standard driving and requires a high level of coaching and nurturing of students who are undergoing training.
Because of my motorcycle passion, the progression for me is to transfer my driving skills from car to bike and pass on the same level of skill to police trainee riders.
Having been involved in all of these areas, I have seen at first hand the importance of road safety and also driver/rider training. People are not born good riders; this has to be taught and learned before implementing the skills. The challenge is to portray this in a way that people understand and can apply the skills.
I really enjoy passing on my knowledge to other people and watching them grow is the highlight of my role as a tutor. When a student demonstrates they understand and start to benefit from hints and tips that I have passed onto them, it gives me great job satisfaction.
It is also a huge pleasure to be able to pass on some of my skills and knowledge to civilian riders in the role I have with Motorcycle Riders Hub. I enjoy teaching advanced skills to riders who want to improve, and seeing a smile on their face when they realise they can do it is the icing on the cake.
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