Suffolk New College invited a real life police bodyguard from West Suffolk to talk to public services students for an off the cuff discussion relating to life working as a crime protection officer.
The invite partly came about because of student interest in these careers owing to the phenomenal success of the BBC TV drama “The Bodyguard”.
Ben Hollands from the police came along to talk about his life and experiences.
During the occasion, he spoke about the history of the role, the skills you need to obtain to be a success in the job and he reflected on a career that has seen him look after high profile politicians like John Major and globally known royals including The Duchess of Cornwall (Camilla).
He said: “One of the highlights of my career was driving into Buckingham Palace for the first time. I’ve also been very lucky to meet some great people and see some fantastic places.”
He discussed the TV show (The Bodyguard) and felt whilst it was good to watch, it wasn’t necessarily very true to life.
He continued: “It was a long way from reality. There was lots of driving fast cars and shooting people – and not much on the planning and organisation behind the scenes. That said, it’s great if it increases the profile of the police and the opportunities within the organisation.”
If he could become to be a bodyguard for anyone famous, who would he choose?
“I’d have to say Mo Salah as my son is a Liverpool fan and it would give me a lot of kudos.”
In terms of the feedback from students, Mr Hollands, added: “The response from the students was really positive and they had some really good questions. Id’ love to come back in the future.”
Martin Memory is a public services lecturer from Suffolk New College.
He said, “You can’t deny the popularity of TV show The Bodyguard and this has certainly created lots of student intrigue in terms of these careers. The talk helps bring the course to life.”
Student, Olivia Webb, said: “The talk was eye opening.”
Another student, Selina Perkins, added: “I didn’t even know that close protection was a thing – I now think I want to head in that direction.”
Pictured above, from left to right, are Selina Perkins, Martin Memory and Olivia Webb with bodyguard Ben Hollands.