Police chief ‘honoured’ by Queen’s New Year award

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Chief Inspector Marlene Baillie, area commander for Mid Argyll, Kintyre, Oban, Lorn and the Islands, said she was ‘honoured’ to be awarded a Queen’s Police Medal.

Chief Inspector Baillie received the accolade, which is the highest honour awarded for policing, in the New Year Honours List after more than 26 years’ service.

She joined Strathclyde Police as a constable, working in various urban locations before taking a post in Oban in 2000.

Promoted to sergeant in 2002, she worked across various locations, gaining promotion to section inspector in Dunoon in 2006, before taking on her current post in Campbeltown in 2009.

Argyll’s large and varied geography means that serious incidents are initially managed by Chief Inspector Baillie and her team before more specialist support arrives.

In such circumstances, strong partnership working is key. For example, when dealing with missing persons enquiries, Chief Inspector Baillie works with partner agencies such as Her Majesty’s Coastguard, Mountain Rescue and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

Overseeing these incidents as the lead agency means Chief Inspector Baillie is responsible for coordinating staff across all partners to ensure the safe return of individuals.

Chief Inspector Baillie is also a wellbeing champion and her enthusiasm for colleagues’ wellbeing is testament to her commitment to officers and staff across the division.

Chief Inspector Baillie told the Courier this week: ‘I am honoured to have been recognised in this way and thankful to everyone who has contacted me offering their kind words in response.

‘I am lucky to work with talented, dedicated and professional staff who have consistently gone above and beyond to deliver valuable policing services across Argyll and Bute, even at the height of the Covid pandemic.

‘This award is a true reflection of the work they do and the sense of duty and responsibility that is felt across the entire policing team.

‘I also work with the most amazing local partners all of whom work tirelessly to keep our communities safe. I am also extremely grateful to the local communities for their continued support and their outstanding resilience.

‘Finally I would just like to thank my family for their encouragement and understanding that has been constant throughout my police service.’