‘Tireless’ local bobby up for national award

A DEDICATED community bobby who was the catalyst behind the revamp of a run-down village hall in Midlothian has been nominated for a prestigious national police award.

Monday, 31st October 2011, 12:09 pm

Sgt Scott Meechan, 44, led a drive to renovate Pathhead Village Hall in a bid to harmonise relations between surrounding estates following an upsurge in antisocial behaviour.

Believing a revamped venue would help unite the surrounding communities, he launched a fundraising drive to refurbish the hall while encouraging local residents to get involved.

He submitted a plan to homeware giants IKEA and secured goods worth £10,000 for the hall. which was then given a major facelift by the community themselves.

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The force said the project had dramatically reduced antisocial behaviour and was an example of Sgt Meechan’s “ability to identify problem areas and implement creative and effective solutions”.

A police spokesman said: “Sgt Meechan has a genuine desire to improve the quality of life in his community.

“He consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty, working tirelessly to make things happen.”

Sgt Meechan will now attend the Police Review Gala Awards bash in London alongside 150 other nominees at The London Hilton, Park Lane, on November 3.

In March, the police officer won a Community Award at a police ceremony in Fettes supported by the Evening News.

Sgt Meechan received 13 nominations for one of his initiatives – the Seed to Soup programme, which encourages youngsters to develop a garden in a bid to divert bad behaviour by promoting practical skills and a healthy lifestyle.

Speaking about his recent nomination, Sgt Meechan said: “I’m delighted to be nominated as it’s a very prestigious national award and fantastic to be recognised on a large stage.

“But I want to make it known that we have achieved what we have in partnership with lots of different people including private sector business. We could not have achieved it all if we were not working together.

“While I may have been the person who brought this together initially I couldn’t have done it without the support of people in the local community and local businesses.

“Ultimately, this is my job and I get paid for doing this whereas there are lots of people giving up their free time to help out in the area. I often get carried along by their enthusiasm.”

Home Secretary Theresa May will give the keynote speech at the event.