I'm Hannah Lambert, I'm a police officer for Northamptonshire Police and I am based at Weston Favell police station. I'm currently in a response role, so I respond to 999 calls, basically go round on blue lights, driving round and responding to incidents. I've been a police officer for two and a half years now and I was a Special Constable before that.
When I was a kid, I never, it's not a life long dream, it's never been ‘I want to be a police officer’ forever. I went through quite a lot when I was young, my sort of young adult years, it just made me want to help people that were in the situation I was in. So had my children, decided, now’s the time. I went to uni, got my degree, and then joined. Maybe when I was 18, I'd had my daughter, I'd been through quite a bad relationship, and I thought maybe one day I could help people like me. See, the police were really good when I went through a lot of stuff. I was a victim of domestic abuse when I was 17/18. I was obviously really young, I was in a situation I didn't know I was in at first and then I realised it was wrong and then I was terrified. I was scared, I didn't know what to do, and I was pregnant at the time with my daughter. Because I've been there and I've experienced it, I go to these jobs, and I see people and I get it. I really get it.
I don't think you ever forget your first arrest. It was when I was a special so quite a long time ago. It was for criminal damage of a pub window. It was really minor, real minor offence in the grand scheme of things, but it was the first one and it’s all exciting isn't it when you’re new and you’ve learnt something new, and you’ve trained for it. It’s all a bit exciting.
My parents are like the proudest human beings in the world. My kids, initially they were like, thought I was really cool. Now they just think it’s boring mum and she goes to work like most kids would think about any job. But, yeah, my friends and family are really proud.
I think there’s always a worry with the job, we all know the risks when we join and we all take those risks, but the way things are going we're more protected as days go on. There’s probably, yeah, there’s probably one that still sticks with me. She has lots of mental health issues, she had a really difficult, sort of, past. I know she’s doing ok now and she’s doing amazing now, but I always think in the back of my mind will she reappear, will we have contact again with her for her mental health and it is really, really tragic sometimes what we hear and what we see. You can genuinely make a real difference to peoples’ lives, and that difference might be minor, but the people that helped me all those years ago, they probably don’t even remember, but the impact they’ve had on my life is huge.
I think when you’re vulnerable and you need help, you don’t know where to go, people call the police. I think to be able to support people in their worst times in their absolute hour of need, not many people get to do that in this world, and I think it’s quite a privilege to be able to be the one that looks after them and supports them and gets that result for them at the end. There’s jobs we go to and people abuse us, people scream and shout in our faces, they're not shouting at me as Hannah are they? They're shouting at the uniform I wear. It does get to you at times, of course it does, we're human. It’s just taking that face off and going ‘no they're not talking to me, they’re talking to the uniform, it’s not personal’. It’s a small minority of people that abuse us, it’s not, we don’t walk down the street and people start screaming and shouting abuse at us. This is a very small minority.
I think as a police officer people forget you are still a human being and you do still feel, and you take things home with you and you go to bed, and you think about the vulnerable people that you deal with all the time because you can’t not. It’s why we do the job because we care, isn’t it? I’m still a normal human being outside of the police. I’m still a mum, I’m still a friend, I’m my parents’ daughter. The positives outweigh the negatives, definitely.
I’m still excited by the job, I still love the job that I do on response. I think I've got a real need or a real want to help people and make a genuine difference in the world. At least consider it if you think of applying, there’s no other job like it. For all the negative press and negative stuff you see, until you’re in it, you don’t realise how good it is.