Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton has returned to work after suffering mental and physical burn-out. Mr Ashton went on leave in November, citing a fatigue-related illness. "Unfortunately, I have allowed myself to become run down, both physically and mentally and now need to take a short break to recover," he said at the time. "I have not had to manage a condition like this before but I expect to take approximately three to six weeks off duty." He returned to work on Monday. "Mr Ashton has written to all staff thanking them for their commitment and particularly those who have worked through the busy Christmas and New Year period," a statement from Victoria Police on Monday morning said. Mr Ashton, who spear-headed a landmark review into the mental health of the state's police officers, encouraged all members struggling with mental health to get support early. "I have been heartened to see this increasingly occurring across the force," he said in a statement in November. "In this regard it is important that I therefore walk the talk, and now take the necessary time to deal with my fatigue issues." For help, contact beyondblue on 1300 224 636 or at beyondblue.org.au. Police officers - current and former - and their families can call Welfare Services confidentially on (03) 9247 3344.