Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

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Grace
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Joined: Tue 02 Jun, 2020 9:38 pm

Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by Grace »

Thank you for you really kind replies thus far. It really does mean so much and I can't thank you enough for the time and effort you've given in posting replies and making your enquiries.

JMA - the person you're referring to is almost certainly my dad as I know that he spent time in both the mounted section and firearms. It wouldn't surprise me if he spent time in Bradford as I remember some reference to him working in Bradford at the time of the Bradford riots and have some recollection of seeing PSU gear. I'm sure he worked at Carr Gate and it would have been in his last years as I have clear memories of visiting there and waiting in the car for him. My brother and I have a very fond memory of seeing one of the dog handlers being pulled over by one of the dogs once as they were taking they were being taken back to the kennels and him getting up and looking around thinking no one had seen it happen.

Thank you for signposting me to NARPO - I'll make sure to take a look.

Iansmithfoley- Those are the right details for my dad. As above I remember visiting Carr Gate and seeing the dog section and being able to see the helicopter. My recollection was that my dad spent more time at Bishop garth in what would have been the mid 90s as I went to Cliff School which overlooked the compound and I remember trying to look over the wall for him at lunchtimes. I also remember him coming to pick me up from school on a horse once!! I think in the mid-late 90s he may have done firearms training at Bishopgarth? I remember we used to walk through the car park most days after he picked us up from school and I remember someone he knew there used to drive a lotus and it would be parked in the same spot down the side of one of the buildings that we would walk past every day.

My dad was a sergeant but I don't think he became so until late on his his career - maybe the last few years. I remember going to a ceremony, again potentially at Bishopgarth and I can't remember if this was to do with becoming a sergeant or to celebrate 25 years service. I think although he was already ill and maybe off sick the force still let him get his 25 years. This ceremony must have been 2001/2002 or 2003 as it was after my parents divorced. I might see if I can find the official photo of the ceremony and see if it will let me share it here to see if his face triggers any memories for anyone.

I remember at his funeral he had some kind of police procession with horses and cars and there were what felt like a lot of the force there. I think someone from the force also made a speech at the funeral. I just don't remember any names.


Thank you both again for you time and kind words.

jma
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Joined: Fri 05 Aug, 2016 3:38 pm

Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by jma »

Grace

I'm really glad I seem to have rememberd the right person. I was worried that mentioning the mounted branch might be a red herring.

The use of various premises in and around Wakefield has changed a lot over the years and I've lost touch since I retired. I believe Bishopgarth has been sold. Apart from formal classroom training, it was used for drill, but not, I believe for firearms.

In the early days after amalgamation in 1974, West Yorkshire Metropolitan Police bought the derelict Oulton Hall intending to convert it into a grandiose headquarters to match the grandiose name. There was never enough money so only a state-of-the-art firearms range was built and the estate was used for public order training. When Oulton Hall was sold, I think firearms moved to Carr Gate.

In theory at least, every police officer, no matter where they were posted, had to have uniform available so they could be turned out rapidly to deal with public disorder.

I think the ceremony you remember was for the presentation of the Police Long Service and Good Conduct Medal after 22½ years service. I think it may have been Colin Sampson who introduced a proper formal presentation ceremony which families and friends could attend.

The funerals of serving police officers do tend to attract a lot of mourners. My own late brother, himself a serving police officer died suddenly after suffering a massive stroke while on duty just 25 years ago. Lawnswood Crematorium was packed and I believe there were more mourners outside who couldn't get in than there were mourners inside.

Now it seems that I've remembered the right person, I'll renew my enquiries. During lockdown I've been seeing a lot fewer people for a chat.

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tyke bhoy
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by tyke bhoy »

Yes "Bish" has been sold. The College Grove Road end (Car Park) has been a housing estate for a couple of years and the Westfield Road/Leeds Road end is being made into a housing estate. It might even be finished by now as it is a while since I've been down Westfield Road and it isn't that evident from Leeds Road.

Carr Gate has been massively extended over the last few years and there is another building not so far away from that.
living a stones throw from the Leeds MDC border at Lofthousehttp://tykebhoy.wordpress.com/

iansmithofotley
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by iansmithofotley »

tyke bhoy wrote:
Thu 18 Jun, 2020 9:03 am
Yes "Bish" has been sold. The College Grove Road end (Car Park) has been a housing estate for a couple of years and the Westfield Road/Leeds Road end is being made into a housing estate. It might even be finished by now as it is a while since I've been down Westfield Road and it isn't that evident from Leeds Road.

Carr Gate has been massively extended over the last few years and there is another building not so far away from that.

There are quite a few videos on You Tube about Bishopgarth, to see them just enter 'Bishopgarth Police Training Centre' in the You Tube search box.
It's strange, as I attended many courses there between 1968 and 1990 and I worked there on staff from 1990 until 1995 and I can't recognise many of the areas filmed. This is partly because of the filming and the light and also because there seems to have been a few internal building alterations since 1995.

Here are a few examples for those that are interested (warning - can be boring):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SdS9zvhqdA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9lUwCkgZUw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=phRAl5v7kWI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTPCHbOdtLY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMH-vs5i9CQ

Ian

jma II
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by jma II »

Ian

Good stuff there. :D

So far, I've only had time to watch the first of the videos but I found it really interesting, including the interleaved clips of the place when it was still in use, eg Archie Andrews conducting the band

It's a reminder of how totally unbusinesslike an organisation like the police can become. AIUI, Bishopgarth began as a bishop's palace and its only real benefit to the West Yorkshire Police in all its incarnations was that it was handy for force HQ in Wakefield. It was massively developed and then with the abolition of the West Yorkshire County Council in 1985, more premises became available eg when highways and transportation functions were passed to district councils, the various HQ departments just swelled under a version of Parkinson's Law. The West Riding County Council had an office tower bock just across Laburnum Road from police HQ, so the police just took it over and filled it.

It's also a reminder to me of how the various HQ departments, of which training was but one, grew unchecked and increasingly formed a bloated tail wagging an emaciated dog.

I value good training and I benefited from it in the police. I also worked at HQ for several years in the mid-1980s so I saw first hand what I'm talking about.

jma
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by jma »

Grace

Just a bit of an update so you know I have not forgotten you.

I have had a chat with one of my neighbours who is now retired but was for many years in Dog Training, originally at Temple Newsam and more recently at Carr Gate. He remembers the name but cannot put a face to it. I thought he was still in regular contact with former colleagues but this is not so. At the moment, of course, there are no get-togethers of any sort so he cannot ask around.

I have one other good prospect if I see him about. It's somebody who worked in Operations Division for a number of years. Until recently, he lived just round the corner from me but has retired and moved, although he still lives somewhere in Gildersome. I don't know his address but I see him about.

Finally, now I'm resonably confident I'm remembering the right person, IIRC, at Force Control he was pally with 46 Steve Pollard who must by now be retired. He was in Leeds City Police so his police service must have begun before 1974.

Grace
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Joined: Tue 02 Jun, 2020 9:38 pm

Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by Grace »

Thanks so much for the update. I really appreciate the time and effort you are going to.

You are definitely thinking of the right person as Steven Pollard is my Godfather and his wife Pauline who I also understand was in the Police for some time is my Godmother. I don't think I have seen them since my dad died and I understand that Steven has a number of health issues. There was also another officer who is my brothers Godfather but I'm not sure if his name.

I found a few photos which may help place some timings. The one of my dad wearing the medal was at the ceremony I mentioned previously. The other photos I have are too large to upload on here but one is of him in uniform on horseback and the other of my brother in a police vehicle which I think is a land rover.








jma wrote:
Wed 01 Jul, 2020 1:35 pm
Grace

Just a bit of an update so you know I have not forgotten you.

I have had a chat with one of my neighbours who is now retired but was for many years in Dog Training, originally at Temple Newsam and more recently at Carr Gate. He remembers the name but cannot put a face to it. I thought he was still in regular contact with former colleagues but this is not so. At the moment, of course, there are no get-togethers of any sort so he cannot ask around.

I have one other good prospect if I see him about. It's somebody who worked in Operations Division for a number of years. Until recently, he lived just round the corner from me but has retired and moved, although he still lives somewhere in Gildersome. I don't know his address but I see him about.

Finally, now I'm resonably confident I'm remembering the right person, IIRC, at Force Control he was pally with 46 Steve Pollard who must by now be retired. He was in Leeds City Police so his police service must have begun before 1974.
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jma
Posts: 268
Joined: Fri 05 Aug, 2016 3:38 pm

Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by jma »

Grace

Thanks for the confirmation that my memory is still reasonably sound.

I'm sure you cherish that picture of your father in uniform at the presentation of his Police Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, and with justification. On an administrative note, if you did want to post other images, then they can be resized; I'm no IT whiz kid but I find MS Paint works well, just check the "resize" option. AFAIK, MS Paint is still included with Windows 10, even though it's not prominent.

West Yorkshire Police introduced proper ceremonies for the presentation of the medal. One tale that disgusted some officers around 50 years ago was when the last Chief Constable of Leeds James Angus was said to have presented it to the then Superintendent Les Barnard in a meeting of senior officers by chucking it across the huge board-room table with the words "Your medal's come, Mr Barnard."

Subject to the limitations of lockdown, I'm still asking around.

jma
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by jma »

Grace

I have sent you a personal message

volvojack
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Re: Former West Yorks Police Officer's collar numbers

Post by volvojack »

My Grandfather was in Leeds City Police and my Mother told me that he said the most trouble in his day was by drunken folks. Later my mother lived on the Bank in East Leeds and she said the Officers used to walk in twos as they could be attacked at times. it seems that sometimes chamber pots contents were emptied on these these officers. It certainly was rough and even the presence of "Rocking Horse" p.c. was not always a deterrent
But that does not compare to what the Officers have to put up with today. Druggies, drunks ( i think all day drinking hours has not helped ) and the general disrespect for the law "uman rights" etc have not helped. My nephew is in the Leeds police and although it is possibly as bad as London he tells me that the abuse spitting and similar is becoming quite common. Though thepay is quite good if i was a younger man i don't think i would join the force. We were brought up to respect the Police Officers but sadly that seems to have gone. My daughter who is a Paramedic here in Gloucester tells me that they also get abuse and sometimes attacked even though her and her partner on the ambulance are there simply to help people who are injured or ill and in some cases save a life.


Maybe it is my age but i can not see things improving. Time to bring back the "Birch" for young offenders, give them a taste of their own medicine and the "Cat" for adults. I also wonder why they abolished Capital Punishment. another deterrent.
Maybe it is just my age but sadly i cannot see things getting any better.

End of gripe apologizes for going off the main subject

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