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On the Beat with Derbyshire Police

Life as a Police Chaplain

By Jo Whitehead

Jo WhiteheadDerby East Section – Cotton Lane

“I am a Priest in the Church of England and became a Police chaplain when I was a Curate. I had always been interested in chaplaincy and enjoyed a placement at the DRI during my ministerial training.

During a journey on the A1 I was close behind a fatal road traffic collision and this inspired me to follow up Police Chaplaincy so I spoke to Canon Keith Orford  at the WCD at Clergy Conference and I completed the National Police Chaplaincy training course at Swanwick the following February.

Jo outside Cotton Lane Police StationChaplaincy can be extremely challenging and it ranges from making cups of tea for officers (who often haven’t got time to drink them as they’re called out to emergencies), supporting officers as a station, a shift and individually and attending as and when support is needed.”

“During this past year Jo has supported the family, friends and colleagues of a Police officer who died on duty and she has supported officers who attended the Victory Road both at the scene of the fire and in the months since. She also supported officers as they gave evidence at Nottingham Crown Court.

Police in action at an incident“If you are considering Chaplaincy, explore what the post entails by speaking to someone at WCD and pray about it. If you enjoy meeting people and supporting them as and when they need it wherever they need it then this is the ministerial opportunity for you.”

You can read more about Jo’s story at


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