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Monday, 06 July 2015

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Tributes to policeman killed in motorbike crash

A policeman from Seaton who died in a motorbike crash had qualified as a firearms officer just days earlier, it was revealed this week.


At his funeral at Distington Hall Crematorium on Monday, colleagues with whom PC Craig Postlethwaite had struck up a close friendship during the eight-week firearms training course formed a guard of honour with unloaded rifles.

After the service, Cumbria’s Chief Constable Stuart Hyde said the 38-year-old had all the qualities you would want in a police officer.

Insp Mark Wear, a close family friend and colleague, described PC Postlethwaite after the ceremony as a natural born thief taker.

PC Postlethwaite died on April 4 when his motorcycle was in collision with a Volkswagen Tiguan on Lamplugh Road between Cockermouth and Eaglesfield.

Insp Wear told the 300-strong funeral congregation, including about 150 police officers, that it was hard to believe that he had only served in the police force since 2008.

He added: “He seems to have been one of those cops who has been about forever.

“After working with Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service, Craig finally fulfilled his childhood dream when just over four years ago he joined the police.

“Throughout his career Craig has always looked to improve his skills and from the very beginning, within two weeks of joining, he was pestering to be put onto the public order training course.”

That training paid off when PC Postlethwaite, along with Insp Wear, was among the Cumbrian officers deployed to support their counterparts in London during last year’s riots.

Two months ago PC Postlethwaite left his patrol job in Whitehaven and moved to the roads policing unit, based in Workington, fulfilling another ambition.

Mr Hyde said: “I have been told by many of his colleagues that he was an exceptional and dedicated officer, who was a well respected friend and colleague to many.

“We have gathered today to pay our respects to an exemplary officer who will be missed by many and is a great loss to the policing family.

“My thoughts are with his family on this sad day.”

He said that PC Postlethwaite was an officer who could be trusted with the highest level of risk and had shown great promise as a firearms officer.

He added: “He had a great sense of understanding how to communicate without shouting or arguing with people. He was always working to support his colleagues.

“I think the turnout at the crematorium demonstrates the high esteem in which he was held.

“It was absolutely packed and we had a huge number of people outside listening to it.

“He leaves behind a devastated family and a lot of very upset friends and colleagues.”

Officers were drafted in from Penrith to allow as many of PC Postlethwaite’s colleagues as possible to attend the service.

Insp Wear said: “He loved his job and loved to tell everybody the stories about it, whether they’d been with him or not.

“He was always dedicated to everything he did and took a massive amount of pride and satisfaction in it.

“It’s a huge loss.”

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