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Marching to mark a milestone


Sixty years ago, the City of Surrey was a very different place than it is today.

Citizens enjoyed a slower pace, a more pastoral setting and a less-complicated lifestyle.

So too, did the city’s police force.

On May 1, 1951, when the RCMP took over policing duties from the Surrey Municipal Police Department, rowdy dance halls, speeding vehicles and liquor complaints at the beach were among the most common service calls.

Fast forward to 2011.

Having grown from a contingent of 18 officers six decades ago, the 641-member Surrey RCMP detachment – Canada’s largest – polices Metro Vancouver’s fastest-growing city by responding to both emergency and non-emergency calls; conducting criminal investigations, intelligence gathering and enforcement operations; and reducing the impact of crime through numerous education and outreach programs.

In recent years, the detachment’s focus on reducing the rate youth, property and violent crime is paying off. Surrey Mounties have also increased traffic safety and improved neighbourhood quality of life.

And the efforts of the detachment’s members and staff go above and beyond the call of duty. Surrey RCMP have partnered with numerous community groups to assist the less-fortunate with initiatives such as Operation Teddy Bear, Cinderella Story, Surrey Food Bank drives, Third World Eye Care, Cops for Cancer, Big Bike for Heart & Stroke Foundation, United Way campaigns, blood donations, Christmas giving and much more.

Over 60 years, throughout a host of technological, cultural and social changes, one thing has remained the same: Surrey RCMP’s connection and commitment to the community.

• Don’t miss the upcoming RCMP exhibit at the Surrey Museum, on display May 20-23. The exhibit will feature 10 display cases of Surrey RCMP artifacts and memorabilia, as well as timeline banners highlighting key dates in the detachment’s history.