A WELL-known policeman is retiring after 30 years’ service and setting himself a new challenge.

PC Terry Triffitt, the popular face of community safety in Ryedale, will hang up his handcuffs for the last time on the June 24, and head off on a 280-mile cycle ride from Newcastle through Scotland.

He will be sponsored to complete the challenge, to raise money for Ryedale Charities Together.

Inspector Tim Hutchinson, head of Ryedale police, said: “We are all going to miss Terry.

“The effort and enthusiasm he has put into cutting down crime and making life better in Ryedale over the last 11 years has been tremendous. “We wish Terry and his wife, Lynda, a long and happy retirement.”

Terry started as a PC back in 1979, pounding the streets of York, joining the York Task Force as a firearms officer during the miners’ strike. Terry then moved into community work and was the local bobby for both Strensall and Huntington.

This close work with the community inspired Terry to become schools liaison officer for York. In 1998, Terry moved to Ryedale as the community safety officer and he has been an integral part of the successful Safer Ryedale Team every since.

Ana Richards, community safety manager, said: “Terry has always worked hard to involve the local community in the work of Safer Ryedale and to make the most of local resources.

“He has worked on innovative projects such as tackling speeding vehicles, farm and shed thefts and doorstep crime, and worked tirelessly to take the views of local people to the people who make the decisions.”

Further accolades came from Neighbourhood Watch, who praised Terry’s friendly and helpful manner, and Safer Ryedale, who said they admired the way that Terry was willing to try his hand at anything.

Sandi Clark, of Safer Ryedale, said: “Never a shrinking violet, Triff has stepped up to the plate to front the formal and the fun side of Safer Ryedale.

“Whether he has been taking the starring role in a DVD about safeguarding farms and farming implements, or measuring sunflowers with school children, Triff has always given 100 per cent.”

Terry says his fondest memories are of meeting Prince Charles in a pub at Castleton in 1999, when the prince opened a community facility in the national park, adding it was the only time in his life he was offered a drink by royalty and one of the few times he has ever turned down a drink.

Looking back on his career, he said: “The thing I have enjoyed most is building up a rapport with the public – showing the caring side of policing with the emphasis on preventing them becoming a victim in the first place, rather than picking up the pieces later.”

To sponsor Terry contact Rachel Popham at Ryedale Voluntary Action on 01653 600120.