A dedicated police volunteer from Bellingham has received an award for his service.

Special Constable Michael Scott (59) has been honoured with a British Citizen Award (BCA) after volunteering with Northumbria Police for nearly 40 years.

The BCA is designed to recognise individuals who make a positive impact in their local community.

Michael, who joined the force in 1983, spends hundreds of hours every year to help serve the Hexham area in his spare time.

He has a full-time job in agriculture but volunteered because he wanted to give back to the region he loves.

"When I joined the police I wanted to do something else other than my every day work to contribute a little bit of my time helping others and to try and make a difference. After all these years I would like to think I have,” Michael said.

“I am so lucky to be patrolling in such a beautiful part of Northumberland, I can’t think of a better place to work.

“I have had some side-splitting moments in my service and some very sad ones but if I had to live my life again, I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Inspector Garry Neill, who along with Sergeant Ian Pattison nominated Michael, said he is an "inspiration to new recruits and seasoned officers alike".

He added: “Michael is a valuable part of our rural policing team and he truly deserves this formal recognition – thank you Michael for everything you do.”

Michael received his award via post after a medal presentation was postponed due to the pandemic but he will also be invited to the Palace of Westminster to receive his full Certificate of Honours when it is safe to do so.

Michael said he still plans to carry on as a volunteer for a few more years yet.

"The thought of nights in front of the television don’t appeal to me at this moment in time."