A WELL-KNOWN Newport police officer has retired from after nearly 30 years in service.

PC Val Bryan has served the community of Newport since the early 90s and touched the lives of many people in his 28-and-a-half years of service.

PC Val started with Gwent Police in March 1994 and was a regular neighbourhood officer for the areas of Pill and Marshfield.

He was a well-known figure in the Pill community, even featured on a mural painted by Andy O’Rouke in Temple Street.

South Wales Argus:

The Mural at Temple Street featuring PC Val and the Pill Carnival Queen 

Mr O’Rouke said: “It’s the end of an era, when I was painting his picture, even when it was just at the rough sketch stage everyone recognised him and had a story to tell.

“Everyone had a kind word and spoke with respect. Some of the people who stopped to chat had obviously had some professional encounters with him and were in awe at how fast he could give chase with them.

“Although they also said he was better on the straights than taking corners, I met him after I’d started painting the mural and he seemed pleased with the result.”

He was recognised for his hard work with his communities, during last year’s Pill carnival, he was commemorated for his years of service to Pill, after being awarded with the valuable members of Pill community award by the carnival committee.

The news of his retirement has been met with great sadness by locals in the Pill area and his colleagues.

South Wales Argus:

His community work will be missed by colleagues and people in the areas he met, including Wesley Cunliffe who turned his life around and is now involved in Welsh Rugby.

Mr Cunliffe, who previously played for Newport, Ebbw Vale and Cross Keys said: “PC Val was a police officer who seen me as a member of the community he served.

“He encouraged and supported me to make changes, so I have nothing but respect for him.”

Chief Superintendent Carl Williams said: “PC Val Bryan dedicated his professional career to public service as a neighbourhood officer in the Pill community, starting as an officer on patrol and later becoming the ward officer.

“Throughout his service, Val has displayed professionalism and compassion towards the community he has served.

"His dedication and impact on that community was recently recognised in the Temple Street mural and an award at the Pill Carnival.

“He will be greatly missed by both his policing colleagues and the community of Pill and I’m sure will remain a pillar of these communities in his retirement.

“Thank you, PC Bryan, for your hard work and commitment over the last 30 years. We wish you all the best in your well-deserved retirement.”