Queen's Birthday Honours

The History Group are very pleased to announce that Her Majesty the Queen has bestowed honours on two of our members:

  • BENJAMIN CLIFFORD, Special Chief Officer, British Transport Police receives a BEM for services to policing.
  • JIM RENTELL, formerly Constable and Football Intelligence officer of Birmingham receives the QPM.

We send our hearty congratulations two both members on their well-deserved honours.


Jim Rentell

Jim Rentell

A British Transport Police officer who served with the force for more than 40 years said it was “wonderful” to have been awarded the QPM (Queen’s Police Medal) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours. Jim who joined BTP as a cadet in July 1973, became a constable at New Street – a job he said he loved. From there, he was posted to Birmingham International Airport and, in 1982, joined the Mobile Support Unit. They were a public order that were often used to police travelling football supporters – and it was football which would come to dominate Jim’s working life.

In 1987, he was part of Operation Red Card, a West Midlands-led operation to infiltrate and stop a Birmingham City hooligan group. The operation led to 67 arrests. Other jobs included being seconded to West Midlands Police for Euro ‘96, the National Football Unit for France ’98, and in 2001, Jim became the Football Intelligence Officer for Wales and Western, and later the Midlands division. He was well known within the football and policing community over the years, as well as getting to attend some of the biggest championships of the last few decades. His last was the Champions League Final in Cardiff last year.

Jim said: “I am very honoured that BTP thought so highly of me over my 44 years of service and put my name forward for this honour. I think what I’d really like to say is thank you for the support of my family – especially my wife Mary, who I have been married to for nearly 40 years – and my two sons Patrick and Andrew, and their other halves. They’ve had to put up with my love for BTP and I know they will be very proud of me getting the QPM. Which is just wonderful.”

Chief Constable Paul Crowther said: “Jim was a well-known and respected officer around the force, and I’m delighted he is being honoured with a QPM. His dedication over 44 years of service was exemplary and included some of the biggest operations the force has ever taken part in – most recently the Champions League Final last year. I know he has been sorely missed since his retirement. This award is just recognition of his contribution to policing the railway and keeping the public safe and I want to once again thank Jim for everything he did for BTP.”


Ben Clifford

Ben Clifford

British Transport Police’s most senior Special Constable has also been awarded an honour in The Queen’s Birthday 2018 Honours List.

Ben Clifford, who is the Chief Officer of BTP Special Constabulary, has received a BEM (British Empire Medal) for services to policing. Ben joined BTP’s special constabulary back in January 2006, being posted to London Victoria and then Croydon. He quickly progressed through the ranks becoming Special Chief Inspector for the London South Area. In April 2014 he temporarily became the Chief Officer for the force’s specials and was appointed substantively to the post in November 2014. As Chief Officer, he leads the force’s 340 special constables nationwide. Like all special constables, Ben’s contribution to BTP is voluntary and is on top of his full-time employment as an academic geographer lecturing in City Planning at University College London. Ben regularly takes his volunteering work up and down the nation, visiting teams across England, Scotland and Wales. BTP Specials play a significant role in the everyday policing of Britain’s railways. From patrolling stations, tram networks and the London Underground, they’ve also contributed to major events such as Notting Hill Carnival, Champions League Final in Cardiff and New Year’s Eve celebrations. Special Constables have also proved invaluable during the heightened threat level in 2017 following the devastating terrorist attacks in Manchester and London.

Chief Officer Ben Clifford said: “It is a huge privilege to receive this honour and it came as a total shock! Since day one at the Special Constabulary, I have enjoyed every second. It hasn’t come without it’s challenges and juggling this role with my full-time employment can be tricky. “However, the work we do as police officers can be extremely rewarding. We see the best and worst in people, helping those in crisis through to arresting criminals, no shift is ever the same. “The last couple of years have been particularly rewarding for me, seeing a growth so that BTP’s specials have been volunteering over 100,000 hours to policing per year. Every day our Specials are out on the network and are contributing hugely to keeping the travelling public safe – I am proud to be a part of this incredible team. “I love what I do, and I definitely see myself volunteering as a special constable for a few more years yet.”

Chief Constable Paul Crowther said: “Ben’s contribution to BTP and policing of the railways has been outstanding. Ben has given over 11 years’ service to BTP’s Special Constabulary – firstly as a Special Constable and since 2014 as BTP’s Special Chief Officer providing inspirational leadership to our Specials, who add extraordinary value to our Force. “In the last 12 months alone, Ben volunteered more than 700 hours to policing, and his wider team of specials have contributed more than 100,000 hours policing the railway and serving the travelling public. “Ben’s commitment and focus has truly made a real difference. I am immensely proud of his work and the work of our Special Constabulary. This honour is well deserved.”


Source: BTP website

See the Honours, Decorations & Medals page.

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