ROAD death and serious injury investigator Nick Anderton is Cheshire Constabulary's police officer of the year.

Nick Anderton is a key part of the force’s Serious and Complex Traffic Investigation Unit and is the constabulary's longest serving specialist roads policing family liaison officer.

Nick has spent a large amount of his personal time developing and presenting case studies to student family liaison officers, providing priceless examples of the difficulties experienced at the saddest of times.

The 47-year-old from North Wales works was rewarded at the Mercure Chester Abbots Well Hotel on Friday 13 September.

After picking up his police officer of the year ACE award, sponsored by Cheshire Police Federation, Nick said: "In 1999 a colleague of mine was killed on duty and I recognised, having dealt with that scene of absolute devastation – something that will never leave me – that something else needed to be provided by the police in support of families.

"So when the force recognised the position of family liaison officer the following year I leapt at the opportunity.

"I have since learnt a lot from helping families who have lost loved ones over the past 20 years and listening to what they want from the police.

"I try to put myself in their position as much as I can and try to provide the service that I hope I will receive if I am ever in that unfortunate position.

"I am proud of the job that I do in helping families in their time of need and it is really humbling to be recognised as Cheshire Constabulary's police officer of the year."

The annual ACE Awards are the constabulary’s highest accolades that can be awarded to an individual or team that has gone an extra mile or demonstrated exceptional commitment to policing in Cheshire.

Chief constable Darren Martland said: "I'm extremely proud of the fantastic work our officers, staff and volunteers do each and every day to help keep Cheshire safe.

"It is important that we dedicate an opportunity like the Ace Awards to celebrate some of this work and hear the inspirational stories which have led to this year’s nominations.

"We have some truly outstanding people at Cheshire Constabulary and I would like to personally congratulate all those who were nominated by their colleagues.

"They all deserve this recognition for their dedicated service to both the constabulary and the communities of Cheshire."

David Keane, police and crime commissioner for Cheshire, added: "The ACE Awards provide us with an opportunity to celebrate the incredible achievements of Cheshire Constabulary's talented officers, staff and volunteers and I am incredibly proud of the work that each and every member of the force carries out round the clock to protect local residents.

"A huge congratulations to all of those who have been recognised at this year's awards.

"Once again, we have heard some inspirational stories of bravery, commitment and going the extra mile to keep Cheshire residents safe."