Prince Charles honours family liaison officers who work on area’s high profile murder cases

ROYAL APPROVAL: Prince Charles meets PC Mark Royle-Evatt and DC Phil Pilkington (S)
ROYAL APPROVAL: Prince Charles meets PC Mark Royle-Evatt and DC Phil Pilkington (S)

TWO police family liaison officers have received national recognition for their work.

PC Mark Royle-Evatt and DC Phil Pilkington attended a ceremony hosted by HRH Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall at Clarence House.

Family liaison officers are specially trained police investigators who work closely with the family of victims of crimes where there has been a death.

DC Phil Pilkington joined Lancashire Constabulary 16 years ago. He has been a family liaison officer for five years, working in Pennine Division’s road policing unit and more recently, Burnley CID.

Over the last three years, he has been involved in three high profile cases including the murder of Blackpool nurse Jane Clough, the murder of Alan Street in Padiham and the murder of Sophie Lancaster in Bacup, for which he received a Commendation from Lancashire Chief Constable Steve Finnigan.

DC Pilkington said: “It is fantastic to be recognised for the role we do and it is particularly pleasing to receive appreciation from the families of victims.

“The role of the family liaison officer is to support and guide families through serious grieving and distress. It is very difficult and emotionally draining to see the sorrow and grieving suffered by families although very rewarding to offer support to families who know they can rely on us to do the right thing for them in times of hardship.”

PC Royle-Evatt has worked as a family liaison officer on Eastern Division’s Road Policing Unit for 10 years, during which time he has helped more than 20 bereaved families.