DUDLEY'S top cop is leaving West Midlands Police after three decades of tackling crime in the region.

Chief Superintendent Sally Bourner is hanging up her hat after a career which has seen her rise from beat bobby to commander of Dudley Police.

Sally joined West Midlands Police as a 22-year-old in 1990 straight after graduating with a degree in French from the University of Birmingham.

She started her career as a beat bobby working from Steelhouse Lane in Birmingham and was involved in a foot chase within a few hours of starting her very first shift - something which became a regular occurrence through her career

Since those early days she's been involved in tackling serious and organised crime and led covert policing teams, as well as leading Force Contact and playing a key role in the force’s WMP2020 transformation programme.

But it has been through her neighbourhood policing roles from Birmingham to Wolverhampton to Solihull and most recently Dudley that she has become a well-known community figure.

She said: “Policing for me has been a real privilege. I have enjoyed meeting so many people and being in a position to help and make a difference to the lives of others. There’s no better feeling and I would recommend a career in policing to anyone. I would do it all over again in the blink of an eye.

“Helping people has been my core purpose and that still remains as I prepare to start new adventures.

“After I have had a bit of a rest I would like to spend some of my time volunteering for charities that help people in need."

Sally, a keen singer in her spare time, also hopes to indulge in some of her passions in life with more free time on her hands.

She said: “I’m looking to brush up on my French and learn to play the piano that has been gathering dust in the dining room at home.

“Retirement will also allow more time with family and friends and include adventures in our vintage VW campervan affectionately known as Betty."