NEW BOOTS have hit the beat as regional people return home to help stamp out crime.
The Oxley Police District (PD) has welcomed two new recruits to the force in a bid to bolster the blue line and keep the community safe.
Probationary constables Nick Ryan and Amy Schofield graduated from the Goulburn Police Academy on Friday, December 8, 2023.
By Monday, they were in full uniform at the Tamworth Police Station, eager to hit the ground running.
Probationary constable Ryan, who's from Tamworth, said he was excited to start working in a community he already felt a part of.
"There's benefits to it, knowing the town, and what goes on," he said.
New recruit probationary constable Schofield, who's from "not far down the road" in Uralla, said working for the Oxley PD was her first preference upon completing her training.
"I like to give back to the community so I thought this would be a great way to do that," she said.
The two new recruits underwent 32 weeks of training, which probationary constable Schofield described as "full-on" and "intense".
"There's such a variety in policing, and you're exposed to so many different things.
"We're looking forward to learning from the experienced officers here at the station, and just increasing our knowledge."
The new officers were among 179 graduates across the state who completed their training in the latest academy intake.
Four new officers have also been recruited to the New England Police District which keeps communities including Armidale, Moree, Glen Innes, Tenterfield, and Uralla safe.
Oxley PD Commander Detective Superintendent Bruce Grassick said it was "exciting" to have regional officers injected back into regional locations.
"They're aware of regional areas, they're aware of regional communities, they have the same perception as our people do," he said.
"They are regional people that have actually lived and breathed these types of areas."
Superintendent Grassick said the two new officers have been deployed to the Oxley command for three years, with scope for their tenure to be extended to help retain staff.