Queen honours top cop from Carluke

The first man to head a Lanarkshire police force for almost half a century, Carlukes Nelson Telfer QPM.
The first man to head a Lanarkshire police force for almost half a century, Carlukes Nelson Telfer QPM.

Carluke’s Nelson Telfer has crowned almost three decades of police service to the public with the award of a Queen’s Police Medal in the New Year’s Honours.

He recently retired with the rank of Assistant Chief Constable of Police Scotland having been the first county police commander since the old Lanarkshire Constabulary was disbanded more than 40 years ago.

It was its successor force, Strathclyde Police, that Nelson joined in 1990 and he first served in the Motherwell area.

In the years that followed, he saw steady promotion and moves, being an inspector at Wishaw and then a superintendent in Glasgow.

All this was leading to the post of Commander of the Strathclyde ‘N’ Division (North Lanarkshire) before, on the formation of Police Scotland, taking charge of its new Lanarkshire Division.

He was to move on to the post of Assistant Chief Constable in 2017, by chance roughly the same equivilant rank reached by his legendary Carluke predecessor, Willie Muncie.

He had a challenging introduction to his new post, taking charge of Police Scotland’s response to the Manchester terrorist bombing.

He was also put in charge of policing of the Glasgow European Championships sports event in August of last year.

Despite his achievements, the award of the coveted Queen’s Police Medal came as a genuine surprise to him.

He commented: “I’m absolutely honoured and humbled to receive the QPM after nearly 30 years dedicated to policing.

“This has come as a total surprise and is undoubtedly one of the proudest moments of my career. It is however not only about me, it’s about the outstanding support and guidance I have had from so many great colleagues, my family and friends and without them this would not have happened.”

Despite retirement, it is unlikely this is the last we’ll hear of Nelson Telfer.