NEWTOWN Volunteer Police Cadets hosted Dyfed-Powys Police’s first ever exchange visit this week, as five American Explorers got an insight into British policing.
The group spent six days with the force, experiencing life in different police departments, training with partner agencies, and seeing some of the sights of Wales.
The first of the force’s cadets to take part in such an exchange – VPCs Rebecca Roberts, Ffion Jones, Tomos Chick and Cheyenne Kirby – spent a week in Maryland, America, last summer. They were pushed to the limit with 5am wake-up calls, gruelling exercise sessions and drill practice as they got an insight into policing across the pond.
Five cadets from the Calvert County Sheriff Explorers group – none of whom have been to the UK before – took part in a return visit this week.
Newtown Sergeant Suzanne Lloyd said: “We are delighted to host the return visit of the exchange, and we are looking forward to giving the Explorers a warm welcome.
“A link has been established between Dyfed-Powys Police and Calvert County which we hope will continue for many years to come. It gives both groups of youngsters a fantastic opportunity to learn about policing in different countries, and is an experience they will never forget.”
The Explorers spent their first night at the College of Policing in Ryton, where they were given an input on search training by officers from the Police National Search Centre, before heading over the border to Wales.
While in Powys, they experienced a training session at Newtown Fire Station, finding out what it’s like for fire fighters navigating through cramped spaces wearing heavy breathing apparatus and protective clothing. They also took part in police drill training and received inputs on British law with the whole Newtown Cadet group.
To get the full policing experience, the Explorers spent time in Dyfed-Powys Police headquarters in Llangunnor, where they were put through scenarios. They kitted up in public order gear for a mock riot and taser demonstration, and put themselves to the test by completing Special Constabulary assessments.
Before heading back to the US, the group was treated to a trip to London, where they visited Buckingham Palace, Westminster Palace, Trafalgar Square and rode the tube.
A further exchange visit is planned for next year.