Friends of the

Metropolitan Police History

Officer 80

Location of interview:

Officer's Gender:Male

Date joined Met Police: 7 October 1963

Date left Met Police:26 October 1993

Rank of leaving:Detective Constable

Divisons served:

Specialist service:No specialities

Transcript of interview

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Track 2: 3’42": Life before he joined the MET.  Apprentice electrician until age 21.  Lack of work and general interest led him to London to the MET.  Father had been a MET PC age 22 for 2 years before returning to Scotland.  Describes fathers career in MET.  Recalls revisiting Dalston with his father and accounting his life in Bethnal Green.  Father had been an inspector in Fife until 1956.  Describes his brother who was a painter and decorator, who died in 1987.  Mother from Fife.  Recalls joining the MET with friend John Fraiser.  Friend became a famous coach after being rejected from MET.

Track 3: 7’26": Recruitment process: exam and called to Borough High Street.  24th September 1963 moved to Borough High Street.  Remembers the culture shock being in a noisy city.  Recruiting office exam.  Training at Peel house for 2 weeks, then moved to Hendon.  Sent to Kings Cross division after training.  Recalls training experience: Hair cuts.  Tommy Wall (3’35”) and his indecent behavior towards PCs.  Recalls assassination of Kennedy.   Describes the accommodation at training school.  Meeting colleagues.  Recalls other training staff: John Harper from Glasgow who was a Judo expert.  Recalls many recruits from armed forces.

Track 4: 6’18": First station Kings Cross Rd.  First posting was night duty to Chapel Market.  First arrest at pub.  Recalls other officers who took him out on the beat.  Car pound run by Sergeant Parker (2’10”) who frequently had altercations with people.  Spike Milligand incident in the car pound.  Reflects on time in Kings Cross.  Community highly Scottish.  Caledonian Road Pub.  Reflects on the history of the area.  Town Hall incident with MP who was anti-police and very antagonistic.  Married quarters.  Recalls meeting his wife, a Scottish lady.

Track 5: 25’08": Working shifts and courting his wife.  Night shifts.  Wife lived in Belzise park.  Charles Rohan House flats.  Court work after night duty.  Recalls incident with transvestite and dealing with complaints against him/her for indecent exposure.  Recalls court case and the transvestites appearance at court.  Inpertuning offence: indecent acts.  Recalls Caledonian Road battle and dealing with difficult incident.  Receiving a commendation at a result.  Recalls court incident involving Frank Jew a dog handler who lived in Upminster and Peter Rusk a solicitor.  Recalls house fight when he was bitten and apprehending the man leading to court case.  1st May 1966 moved to Dagenham as aid to CID.  Recalls long commute.  Motivation for becoming an aid to CID.  Reflects on his ability to mix with Scottish locals in his division.  Then worked in Upminster and later to Harold Hill.  Reflects on differences in the areas: people, crime and approach to tackling criminal behavior.  Recalls colleagues.  Fireman who burnt to death and life in Upminster.  1st January 1967 moved to Harold Hill.  Recalls falling out with detective Chief Superintendent.  Ted Morgan asked him if he wanted to stay, but moved to Crime Squad in Dagenham.  Recalls results.  Moved then to Barking. 

Recalls good work at Dagenham: search warrant and unusual place found items. 

Humber estate CID car and issues gaining access.  Ex-chief inspector from flying squad at CID.  Various stories from his time at squad and working in the Q car: finding a criminal with domestic problems motivating his criminal activity.  Terrible problem with burglaries.  Recalls he discovered a record of fingerprints and his involvement in investigating robberies.  Working with Ron Peverley and accidently apprehending Robert Taylor who was responsible for 100s of burglaries.

Track 6: 3’43": Explains the man received an extended sentence.  Recalls the man explaining his robberies and meeting a large dog.  Remembers another incident of burglaries and finding it was the same man after he had got out of prison.   Detective Constable.  Detective training school at Hendon.  Exams and pressure.

Track 7: 9’01": Harold Hill to Dagenham in Crime Squad.  Moved from Crime Squad to Barking.  Describes incident he dealt with involving 10,000 pairs of Levi Jeans and arresting 29 people.   15 months at Chelmsford Crime Court.  Describes gathering evidence and process of prosecution.   Explains the difference between legitimate Levi Jeans and illegitimate ones.  Defense involved in case was Singh (3’43”) and David Miller.  Mitchell also involved.  Peter Reignwood (4’20”).  Recalls incidences during the court process involving Singh requesting that larger presentation of jeans found.  Recalls the sentences given to the handlers of the stolen goods.  Investigating Lorry thieves: Ronney Turner from Deptford 1978.  Reflects on the ease of dealing with criminals then.  Regional Crime Squad at Barkingside.

Track 8:4’00": Life with the Regional Crime Squad – 9 region (Essex/Hertfordshire).  Recalls results while at the squad.  Recalls being called to a farm in Hampstead ?? and discovering a lorry load of whiskey.  Reflects on the extent of activity at the farm.  Recalls visit to Edinburgh Whiskey distillery and problems gaining access to information.  Post-court case left with large amount of whiskey.

Track 9: 20’43": Returned the whiskey to Scotland.  All received commendations.  Describes another incident involving a man in Canning Town selling car radios.  Recalls discovering unusual cigarettes.  Problem of dealing with seized goods and encouraged to destroy them.  Discovered origins of the cigarettes from Egypt and people involved.  £1 ½ million worth of cigarettes.  Recalls they would meet every 3 months after working together in squad.

Living in married quarters in Hornchurch and dealing with police life and married life.  Describes the issue of married quarters being sold unfairly.  Domination of job in life.  Limehouse 1981.  Initially disliked working at Limehouse, but later loved it.  History of Limehouse.  Telegraph pub robberies.  Recalls being offered to buy the pub.  Reflects on the community.  Murders.  Chinese restaurant owned by Chinese government. 

Private investigator he knew and information he gained from him: arms dealer.  Summoned to Special Branch led from this information.  Describes discovering fake t-shirts and apprehending the culprit for the man involved in Manchester.  Linked to the Levi case.  Recalls the hotel they stayed in while trying to apprehend the man. Limehouse firm who made roofing felt.  Investigating criminal activity and reflects on long hours and irregular lifestyle.  Crays. 

Worked with Peter Remy at FIB.  Working on lorry loads.  Worked as a liaison officer and became a Freeman of the City of London.  Recalls relationship and incidents working with FIB.

Track 10: second interview 2nd November 2010

Track 11: 14’41": Tells a story about job whilst working as an aid to CID: Illford murder investigation of a young Indian girl.  Parts of her body found in different places, but head missing.  Discovered at Wanstead Station in a duffle bag.  In charge of the head.  Roy York led the enquiry.  Requested to transport the head and governors briefcase to Wolverhampton. Recalls incident and problems of transporting the head to pathologist by train and back again.  Problems of dealing with the head.  Jim Smith.  Father arrested for the murder.  Describes the motive and prosecution of the father.  Indian community.

Case of Carol Vidler (7’00) murder 1977.  After attending a church disco in Romford.  Bludgeoned to death.  Murder squad established. Describes dealing with the murder enquiry and efforts to apprehend the murderer.  Father suspected but no evidence.  Later in Collingham, Essex, a lady disappeared.  Her handbag found and stolen car recovered in Upminster.  Body found by farmer.  Observation of abandoned car and apprehending culprit: Barry Kemp.  Complaints investigation after the trial.  16 years conviction of Kemp.

Track 12: 4’32": Joining the Forces Intelligence Bureau.  Asked to join by Ken Andrews.  Describes life in new job.  Worked on stolen lorry loads.  Explains the ‘Corner game’ and ‘jump-ups’ to hijack lorries.  Predominately dealt with whiskey trucks. Territorial support group last posting in MET as CID officer.  Describes crimes he dealt with: anything and everything.

Track 13 3’51": Preparation of cases for court.  Gives example of a case involving T-mobile stolen mobile phones, sim cards and other crimes in large fraud case.  Recalls it went to crown court a week before he was due to retire.  Remembers problems of reclaiming extra money owed to him because he worked beyond retirement.  Remembers Territorial support group’s work.

Track 14: 5’24": 21st October retired.  24th October became security surveillance officer with Barking and Dagenham council.  Remembers high demands of the job and the Americans taking over the division.  Ex-terrorist squad led team.  Lack of money offered for his work.  Decision to leave.  Return to old boss in council.  Looked after Kosavan refugees at hostel.  Surveillance work.  Street market surveillance.  Worked there from 1999 until retirement 31st March 2010.  Life in retirement: travel and leisure. 


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