Friends of the

Metropolitan Police History

Officer 09

Location of interview:Slough

Officer's Gender:Female

Date joined Met Police:26 January 1970

Date left Met Police:15 February 2000

Rank of leaving:Sergeant

Divisons served:G Stoke Newington, D (Paddington), Airport

Specialist service:Traffic

Transcript of interview

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Track 2: 14’59”: Describes Paddington and wider D division. Paddington’s geographic circumference and character of the community. Sussex Gardens and prostitution problems. Character of colleagues and living in section house. Moving to a penthouse in new section house of Paddington. Women police officers role in Metropolitan Police Service: juvenile, domestic and paperwork roles for the women. Black and ethnic minorities (BME) in the Metropolitan Police Service. Policing the black community and describes an incident in Marylebone station involving youths attacking a black ticket collector. Arrest and prosecution of the youths. Issue of black youths claiming the prosecution was a witch hunt and problem of intimidation of witnesses.

Track 3: 7’05”:  Policing public order: teachers march and catering of the police. Policing Lords cricket ground and discusses the perks of the role. Tackling the Bloody Sunday demonstration and march by the Republicans towards Downing Street. Recalls the violence and attack on police officers by the demonstrators. Back injury during the incident.

Track 4: 4’41”: Leaving Paddington Division in April 1973: recalls successes and reputation. Decision to apply for the traffic department and acceptance to traffic control in Barnes. Reflects on adjusting to his new role and the demands of the large area. Public order roles.

Track 5: 3’38”: Passing the advanced driving course and dealing with terrorist activities. Changing role as a result of demands of terrorism in London. Recalls the death of a colleague in Kensington Church Street as a result of a bomb.

Track 6: 2’14”:  Adjusting to new posting to Barnes traffic control. Colleagues character and relationship with him.

Track 7: 7’05”: Gaining experience in traffic control and dealing with fatal traffic accidents. Metropolitan Police Service support of demands of role through provision of courses. Married life in Maida Vale. Birth of son in 1973 and move to Richmond. Daughter born in 1976 and move to a Police house in Sunbury. Discusses the problem of tackling drunk driving and reasons for leaving Barnes. Posting to Hampton and new experiences.

Track 8: 9’13”: Differences in policing in various areas: Paddington, Barnes and Hampton. Old officers character in Hampton. Policing the M4 motorway and other major roads at Hampton. Recalls dealing with fatal traffic accidents. Finding a car a long way away from a road and dealing with serious injuries to the passengers. Procedure and protocol of allocating Area support. Reflects on differences in outer London to inner London for tackling major accidents.

Track 9: 6’16”: Recalls other major accidents in Hampton. Remembers a motorcyclist fatality after hitting a lamp post head-on and problems of identification. Struggling with role of informing the family of the accident and the death of their son.

Track 10: 17’21”:  Shift work and time off while working in the traffic control unit. Incident on A106 involving two coaches carrying children to a match in Richmond. April 1979 worst incident he dealt with, which occurred on M4 motorway near Heston. Recalls impressions of the carnage of the accident: finding vehicles and 6 dead bodies across the road. Explains how it happened and led to the fatalities. Procedure of investigating who was driving. Laboratory investigative procedure.

Track 11: 3’19”: Discusses the accident in more detail. The Swiss registered Porsche driver was involved in a train robbery. Impact of witnessing the accident on his private life and psychological feelings. Canteen culture and pub culture for therapy. Lack of counselling.

Track 12: 8’58”: Decision to apply for promotion at Chiswick. Problems of passing and failure of first attempt. Succeeding to pass the second time round. 1981 promotion to Sergeant and posting to Airport district. Reflects on role as Sergeant. First parade at Heathrow after 12 years service. Instructor role of younger officers. Reception at new uniform position after traffic role. Character of the station and colleagues. Reflects on transition from Constable to Sergeant, and demands of the rank.

Track 13: 9’03”:  Working as a Sergeant in Heathrow. Relief work and structure. Working in the general duties relief. Recalls charges and crimes he dealt with: drug smuggling, illegal taxis, drunk driving and traffic accidents. Brixton Riots led to new system to bring in District Immediate Response Units. Tackling the second Brixton riot. Recalls a black officer on his team and his experience of facing the racial tensions with the black community he was policing.

Track 14: 4’47”:  Recalls aiding the policing of the Miners Strike in Grantham. Billeting to an army camp and station to small town in Nottingham. Bussing around to tackle riots and violence against police officers. Impact of posting to home life.

Track 15: 3’24”: 6 years in Heathrow and tackling terrorism. Incidents of a terrorist explosion within a terminal. Contingency plans to tackle the threat and devising a system for incidents.

Track 16: 14’35”:  Running the traffic unit in Heathrow. 1987 transferred to Alperton traffic base and return to policing most of the old areas. Liaison Sergeants role for Uxbridge. Roles and demands of Alperton. Vehicles upgraded to aid the demands of policing Ealing and Acton gangs.

Track 17: 6’25”: Installation of videos in police vehicles. Working as a trainer in the Metropolitan Police Service for videos in cars. Working with the media and releasing the material to thebroadcasting companies. Escorting of wide loads across London. Tackling the demands of the London Boat Show at Earls Court. Bringing the large boats across London.

Track 18: 9’29”: Assisting with a Latvian initiative to introduce the new technology to Latvian police. Recalls the problems that arose and prevented him undertaking a trip to Latvia. Restructuring of Metropolitan Police Service and posting to Hampton to finish traffic control work. Role for tasking and organizing procedures. Working with other sections of the police. Continued training, such as chemicals, tackling terrorism and youth/community work. Work with Gillingham young offenders institution and helping youths understand the law.

Track 19: 9’24”: Weekend work as a traffic Sergeant. Tactical Support and Containment role. Working at the M4 motorway control post at Heston. Reflects about the perks and draw backs of the role. Discusses the M4 bus lane and the failures of introducing it successfully. Role in establishing procedure and protocol. Problem of motorcyclist accidents and role of initiating motorcyclists being able to use the bus lanes. Tackling the Millennium evening and the concern about the Millennium bug impact on computers.

Track 20: 8’59”:  Retirement and reasons for taking the decision to leave. Demands of his role. Life after retirement: employment and eventual job as a chauffeur. Reflects on working for himself. Reflections and regrets about career. Perception of friends and family about his role as a police officer and decision to retire. Impressions and influence of police life on later roles in the community. Final thoughts about career. Using his truncheon only once and this was against a woman.

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