A TOWN Mayor spontaneously shaved a German police officer's beard to raise funds for Travel Aid for Parents with Sick Children (TAPS).

Police, retired and serving, from all over Europe gathered over the weekend for the 30th anniversary of The Police European Fishing Championships, which were held at fisheries in Witham and Braintree.

Halstead Mayor Shirley Diver attended not as mayor, but in her capacity as President, Alan Diver's wife, but managed to do some fundraising in the process.

After chatting to one officer, Andreas Kreutz, about TAPS, her charity for the year, he insisted he wanted to shave his beard in the charity's name.

A quick sweep of the room, and £289 had been raised for the cause, and Mrs Diver, clippers in hand, did the honours of removing his lengthy facial hair.

Mrs Diver said: "I couldn't believe that he would do that.

"I'm sure it's nopt in the Mayors job description to shave beards.

"I really can't thank Andreas enough and everyone who donated.

"With lots of laughter and photos being taken a total of £289.00 was raised for TAPS."

The annual competition was rounded off with an evening at Marks Tey Hotel, with prizes and awards were given out by Deputy Chief Constable of Essex, Ben-Julian Harrington.