A Greater Manchester police officer has become the face — and feet — of her city’s Pride celebrations after a video of her busting some moves to the iconic song “Footloose” has gone viral.
We all know what it’s like: when you gotta dance, you gotta dance. Even if you’re on duty, like 44-year-old Jacqui Prest. The married mum-of-one showed off some impressive jive moves across Portland Street in Manchester city centre, to the delight of the watching crowds.
Video credit: Emma Poulliquen/YouTube
Jacqui, who has been a police officer for 18 years, and transferred to Greater Manchester from Merseyside eight years ago, spoke to the Manchester Evening News about becoming an Internet sensation.
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“The reaction to the video has been amazing, so overwhelming,” she said. “I just can’t get over it. Just this morning I was on the phone to CBS News in New York, and I also met Leo Sayer while at the BBC — I’m sure I’ve danced to a few of his songs in the past. Anyone that knows me wasn’t surprised by the footage though — I dance all the time, I just love it. I always pull some moves on a night out and even have a dance while doing the housework.
“As a gay woman I am happy to be involved with anything that helps promote the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual community,” Jacqui continued. “And that also shows that police officers are human beings and part of the community in Manchester.”
Regular Manchester Pride goers may recognise Jacqui from previous years — she has taken part in the parade almost every year since moving to Manchester and once donned a panda costume for the occasion. She hopes the “amazing” reaction to the video will help send the LGBT community the message that the police “understand and are there for them.”
Jacqui certainly seems to have won the hearts of the people of Manchester, who took to social media to praise her for doing “more for police/public relations in 5 mins than politicians have done in 5 years” (sic) and “showing the friendly human face of the police.”