As most begin to wind down and look forward to some relaxation over the festive season, there are many who will be spending Christmas working to keep people safe.

NHS staff, carers, firefighters and police officers are among those who will be putting the turkey on hold in the name of public service.

Cambridgeshire Constabulary spoke to two police officers who will be working this Christmas.

PC Joe Kirby, who works on response from Parkside Police Station, in Cambridge, has been an officer for a year.

He said: “I’m relatively new to the job so this will be my first experience of working at Christmas. I’ll be on ‘earlies’ so will be working from 7am to 3pm.

“I’m not completely sure what the shift will feel like, but I am really looking forward to seeing what it brings.

“I’ve spoken to some of my colleagues who have said the day can go either way: it can be really busy or sometimes pass without much incident.

“I’m also working on Boxing Day, so I think I’ll see my family and friends in the few days I have off between Christmas and New Year.”

PC Harry Johnson, also a response officer, is based at Thorpe Wood Police Station, in Peterborough.

He’s been an officer for two and a half years and is due to work ‘lates’ on 25 December (3pm-11pm).

“Christmas Day working can be challenging at times, managing the outstanding calls for service alongside dealing with any detainees from Christmas Eve”, he said.

“I find mornings to be relatively quiet as families enjoy their day, but as the alcohol intake increases there is often an increase in domestic-related incidents. 

“Additionally, drivers nipping out to see friends and family having had a drink the night before or on Christmas Day can lead to an increase in drink driving.

“I like working on Christmas as there is a more relaxed atmosphere, both in the office and with members of the public who are keen to wave and wish you a merry Christmas.

“I do celebrate with family on Christmas Day. On early shift I go to my parents’ after work and have a full sit-down family dinner, as they plan ahead to finish cooking to coincide with my finish time. 

“If I’m on late shift or night shift, I have a Christmas dinner before (but without the alcohol). 

“I grew up with my family in the police. My father was an officer and we got used to disrupted and rearranged timings at Christmas.

“However, we always make the most of the day, regardless of when I finally arrive home. It allows me to better appreciate the time I have with loved ones.”