SIX months ago PCSO Samantha Jones was an assistant at Bridgend County Borough Council - now she is co-ordinating the Christmas festivities in one of Barry’s main shopping streets!

The 26-year-old is one of 14 new Welsh Government-funded PCSOs to be stationed in Central BCU covering the Vale and Bridgend.

Samantha has made such a positive impression since graduating that she has been given the responsibility of ensuring this year’s Christmas preparations in High Street run safely and smoothly.

“Having previously worked for a local authority, I am used to providing a professional service to the public and finding solutions to problems,” said PCSO Jones, who spent five years volunteering as a Special Constable.

“I previously applied to be a PC and a PCSO, and this time I was lucky enough to pass the assessment. I guess you could say it was third time lucky and I absolutely love it!”

Samantha is one of the 500 additional Community Support Officers across Wales being funded by the Welsh Government as one of its top five priorities. She started training in July and has been working independently since graduating in October.

“I am really pleased to be given this opportunity,” she added.

“The role of PCSO gives me to time to interact with the community and tackle any issues residents and business may have.

“I have been given the responsibility of organising the Christmas operation in High Street, Barry, which is going to be a real challenge and one I am looking forward to.

“My aim is to ensure that everyone visiting and working in High Street has a safe and very happy Christmas.”

Assistant Chief Constable Julian Kirby said: “The public want a visible and accessible presence from its police service, and the additional officers will assist considerably with this.”