Public gets a glimpse behind the scenes of police station
FROM the carpark to the lockup, thousands of residents got a behind-the-scenes peak as Tweed police threw open the doors of their new headquarters.
The Wharf St station, which opened last September, hosted their first community open day on Sunday, with an estimated 3000 visitors flowing through the premises during course of the day.
Tweed Byron Police District Superintendent Wayne Starling said he would look to repeat the open day invite on an ongoing basis following the overwhelming success of the event.
"I expected large crowds,” Supt Starling said.
"I wasn't surprised but it's always nice. It's always nice to deal with the people we serve and protect.”
Supt Starling was particularly pleased with the high turnout of children.
"The most rewarding thing for me, personally, is seeing our police interact with the children,” he said.
"It's really pleasing to see. You see so many happy kids, it just makes your day.”
He was hopeful there were some future recruits among the crowd, such as five-year-old Banora Point boy William Renwick.
William's nan, Vicki Barber, took her grandson along to the station for the day.
She said the day was a great opportunity for William to check out the new station.
Ms Barber said William had previously been dreaming of becoming a soldier: that was until he saw the police jetskis.
"I like police,” William said.
After a tough few weeks for some of his staff, involving several alleged assaults on officers and accusations of police brutality, Supt Starling said the day - planned since last year - was a good opportunity to reaffirm their positive relationship with most of the community.
"It is so healthy for our police to have days such as this,” Supt Starling said.
"Unfortunately, we don't always deal with the good people in the community.
"We deal with people who try to hurt our community so (this day) is just so rewarding for everybody.”
He is now considering holding open days every two years.
"The community paid for the police station, the community pays our wages,” he said.
"We're servants to the community and I think it's very important that we bring them into our home.
"I'd do it more often, I just haven't got the resources to do it.”