A new Superintendent has taken over as head of policing across the Royal Borough.

Superintendent Colin Hudson took over on Monday as Commander for the Windsor and Maidenhead Local Police Area, replacing Superintendent Bhupinder Rai who transferred to her new position as Head of Force CID on the same day.

Superintendent Hudson is the first to join Thames Valley Police via the new Direct Entry Superintendent programme. This national initiative, which is operated by the College of Policing, is designed to recruit professionals from outside the policing sector.

He has a degree in physics and longstanding career in software engineering within the mobile telecommunications sector behind him.

Prior to joining Thames Valley Police he delivered multiple complex projects for a range of small, medium and large companies, including the rollout of Sky's first internet service.

He said: "I am very pleased and really honoured to be given command of the very professional and effective police resources across the Windsor and Maidenhead Local Police Area.

"I am looking forward to working with my officers and police staff in collaboration with local partners to build on the successes already achieved."

The Direct Entry Superintendent programme has a rigorous nine-stage selection process and can take up to eight months to complete.

As part of the selection process, candidates are put on an intensive learning programme and have to complete rotations as a Constable, Sergeant, Inspector and Superintendent. They are required to pass all assessments at each rank in a very short space of time, as well as passing a new legal exam which covers statutory responsibilities.

Candidates must also complete a business improvement report and a community engagement project, both of which are scrutinised by a panel at the College of Policing. While doing this, candidates have to participate in duty cover and are temporarily posted into a Superintendent position. During this time they shadow another senior officer as part of their development plan.

Out of the 950 candidates who applied for the programme nationally, Supt Colin Hudson is one of only eight to be joining the service.