After 17 years leading two of Hertfordshire's community safety schemes, volunteer Sue Thompson has retired.

Sue, who is based in Three Rivers, has been heavily involved in the county's neighbourhood watch (NHW) and online watch link (OWL), in her role as volunteer chairman of Herts Watch.

This week, Chief Constable Charlie Hall presented Sue with a commendation for her outstanding voluntary contribution, alongside Superintendent Matt Phillips and Chief Inspector Pete Frost.

Hertfordshire Constabulary says Sue has been so successful leading Herts Watch – the umbrella committee for NHW and OWL – that is it one of the best schemes in the country.

More than 160,000 households are signed up to receive regular messages about local crime, scams and missing people.

Sue said: "I have thoroughly enjoyed my time working with the police and I’m delighted to leave neighbourhood watch in such a strong position.

"I feel sad to be leaving work that I have enjoyed doing for so long and more importantly saying goodbye to those people who have become treasured and valued friends.

"It was a truly memorable occasion which I can treasure for many years to come. I still haven’t got over the fact that Charlie Hall thought it was important to leave his desk to come and join us."

Chief Constable Hall said: "I was delighted to present Sue with a commendation for all her hard work and success in developing OWL and NHW across the county, making it one of the strongest schemes in the country.

"We are indebted to her for giving up her free time to really make a positive difference, connecting the police with thousands of households throughout the county and, importantly, helping to reassure our communities."

Deputy NHW chairman Keith Batchelor is temporarily filling Sue’s shoes until a new recruit can be found.