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Police mark pay parade

Wairarapa police participated in their annual pay parade on Friday, an event at which the men and women in blue are recognised for their long and outstanding service.

The long-standing tradition has previously been held at Queen Elizabeth Park, but this year was shifted to the netball courts on Colombo Rd, where police and other attendees could gather under shelter.

“We call it pay parade because traditionally, police had to line up every fortnight to be inspected to gain their pay,” Wairarapa Area Commander Scott Miller said.

Pay parades are one of the instances where police get to wear their formal uniforms, also referred to as a “number one”.

“Every policing area has their own form of award ceremony; we go with the old-fashioned pay parade, but not many across the country would still do it,” Miller said.

This year also saw the introduction of an award presented by local iwi, recognising iwi liaison coordinator Joseph Harwood for his high level of contribution to police and iwi partnerships.

Senior Constable Pete Cunningham received an award for long service and good conduct over his 28-year policing career.

Three fishermen who performed a daring rescue off the coast at Flat Point and saved the lives of two men were also given awards for their heroic actions earlier in the year.

As previously reported by the Times-Age, the yacht became caught in wild weather back in June after suffering a rudder malfunction and the rough conditions tore their anchor from the deck.

The rough and deteriorating conditions meant it was too dangerous to launch a helicopter rescue and, due to the urgency of the situation, the closest vessel [a fishing boat named Tai Kahu] was called in to help.

The Tai Kahu rescue crew honoured on Friday consisted of skipper Johnny Burkhart and crew member Mark Anderson, along with Luke Mckay [a crew member from another commercial vessel].

Students from Chanel College who participated in the Police Pathways Programme were also given awards for their completion of the programme.

More than 20 officers and members of the public received recognition of their achievements at the event.

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