10:00AM - 2:00PMSend a message Listen Live
Tribute To PC Nicola Hughes From Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy.
Constable Nicola Hughes joined Greater Manchester Police on 3rd August 2009.
She was then only twenty one years old which many will recognise as young for a recruit today but it shows she impressed the selection panel with her readiness for the challenge ahead.
Despite her young years, she was incredibly mature, something that was recognised and reported upon by her former College tutor, Tim Thompson, who stated that Nicola was mature beyond her years, displaying high levels of initiative when working in a team or as an individual. He also said that Nicola had a great sense of humour, was always polite and cheerful.
Nicola spent her service first as a neighbourhood officer and then as a response officer on C relief at Tameside Division.
She set high standards for herself and impressed everyone with her dedication and her cheerfulness. She had huge amounts of energy and initiative.
Nicola's family talk of that proud moment which all police officers will remember when you bring your uniform home for the first time and put it on to show your family and have photographs taken. And you wonder whether you will up be able to meet the standards the public expect of that uniform, will you be able to fill those boots - in Nicola's case there was never any doubt.
She showed herself highly capable in situations of disorder, brave when searching apparently unoccupied premises and going into the unknown but on the other hand showed great compassion to victims of crime and on one occasion stopped her police van to rescue a mouse being fought over by two cats.
Nicola stepped forward to become a police officer knowing full well the risks involved given that her father Bryn is a prison officer. She decided not to be a bystander but to join the fray.
Nicola like Fiona had many of the qualities we see in our young police officers and in young people in general. They do not have the prejudices and hang ups of my generation and take people as they are whatever their background. They have a great skill for communicating, showing compassion and empathising with the experience of others. They have great patience. They are great at making friends and keeping them. Nicola showed all these qualities.
Nicola signed up to the police service knowing that she would put herself in danger. She understood that the unarmed status of British policing is not some tactical option or us holding on to an historic tradition now out of date. She understood it is central to our commitment to the minimum use of force to our relationship with the public and to serving citizens rather than controlling them as some arm of the state
As Sir Robert Peel laid down in 1829 "by ready offering of individual service and friendship to all members of the public without regard to their wealth or social standing, by ready exercise of courtesy and friendly good humour; and by ready offering of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life." Nicola made that sacrifice
In his sermon at the national Police Memorial Service the Archbishop of York said that peace-making is a costly business and that those who work to bring justice bear the wounds of love in doing so. Nicola sadly died from those wounds through her own devotion to others
Nicola in her dedication and professionalism in the way she carried out her duties showed that policing is not about muscle but is about reason, restraint and intelligence. She had a promising career ahead of her but was driven not by personal ambition but by service to the public in need.
It is abhorrent that she met her death through an evil, dark act but the best tribute we can make to her memory is that we continue to uphold the standards and the style of policing she demonstrated so well and ensure that might does not conquer over justice.
It is clear from every conversation we have with them that her family were so proud of Nicola. She was a fighter whether engaged in her favourite sport of karate or fighting for justice for a victim of crime. Nevertheless it is her warm smile and her gentleness that stand out from every picture of her. She will be greatly missed by everyone that knew her. We will never forget her great sacrifice.