From priesthood to policeman

An engaging talk last night from Rich Keenan, a Chief Inspector in the Leicestershire Constabulary.  Rich grabbed our interest right from the start, explaining how, as an 18 year old, he plucked up courage to tell his father that he was planning to go to priest training college.  Located in the wilds of the Durham hills, he spent 2 years’ training before a group of female friends lurred him away.

He began a chequered career from selling aluminium double glazing, doing shifts as an overnight care worker in a hostel to teaching in a devoutly run Jesuit school.  Eventually joining the Met, Rich humourously took us through his training, placement in upper class Kingston on Thames to handling protest crowds in Trafalgar Square.  Family needs brought him to Leicestershire, where diverse roles have included work in rural Melton Mowbray (making decisions on whether the road was too muddy) to the Somali community in Highfields.

His local link?  Getting married 22 years’ ago in the Congregational Church where we meet monthly.