George Sharp Ex PC 149 'A'/121517 'AD' 1931 to 1934
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Welcome to the George Sharp Page. Alpha Delta Plus is most fortunate indeed to have 'found' George on the other side of the world in New Zealand via the modern day technologies of the internet.
As you will see George is from a slightly earlier era and will be 97 years of age on the 16th December 2007. He handles this new technology with ease. (Unlike most of us!)

ENJOY HIS PERSONAL MEMORIES OF CANNON ROW ALL THOSE YEARS AGO. George has also submitted an excellent item on Wellington Arch recalling his duties there in the 1930's.

Click on ANY helmet image on this page for 'SIGNPOST' (Express Navigation) and select 'Wellington Arch' to view his contribution).



Update: Sadly, George passed away peacefully on the 28th August 2007 in New Zealand aged 96....Thanks George for your contributions to Alpha Delta Plus

LEFT: Me At Six Months Service.....1932.


(When taken to 'How We Look Today (1)remember to scroll down the page to view George's picture)


The attachment is not 'Vanity', but to prove my 'Bona Fides'. The photo was taken March 1932 at 6 months service, (you can blow it up to obtain the full Div No.) and I retired at 25yrs in 1956 after doing the rounds of No.1 District.

Now approaching my 92nd Birthday, am still Computer Literate, and have been for over the past 17 years. Am using a "PowerMacintosh G3'
Yes I can tell a couple of stories about 'AD' and probably a little more. As previously mentioned, arrived at 'AD' on 14th September 1931 from 'Peel House' Regency Street, with 3 other colleagues. They were Alfred Howes 121A, Hugh Brewer 172A,(Deceased), and Albert Treeby 555A.(Deceased)'. Both Brewer and Treeby were on the same relief as myself, Alfie Howes was on another relief. We all became firm friends.
Alfie Howes 121A, is still alive and lives at Brighton Sussex,(we exchange Xmas greetings)
We were assigned a Cubicle each in the Section House above the'Stables' situated in the Station Yard. The Section House Sergeant was an old 'Scot' Sgt Fitzgerald. Even in those days the Section House was being looked at covetously by the C.O. Authorities looking for more Office Space to expand, which came a couple of years later and we were told to quit.

The Mess Room and Kitchen were fairly spacious with the usual cooking facilities with a dinner cooked for us each day. The 'Dues' for our accommodation including the 'Dinner' was Seventeen Shillings and Sixpence per week,payable directly to Sgt Fitzgerald who was always found hovering over the 'Pay Table' each Wednesday to collect payment. For the rest of our food we looked after ourselves.

Above the Station entrance,1st Floor was the Billiard Room with 2 full sized Tables, behind that was the Rest Room and Library, and on the upper floors resided the Sub Inspector (Brown) and family, and also the Chief Inspector (Ballantyne) and family. On the top floor was the Supts Office and District Office. In the Basement was the 'Gym' 'Uniform Room' and 'Canteen' also a Rifle Range. PC Colleagues were P.C, 101A. Dave Llewellyn, Bill Cundy, Alfie Curle, Harold Dee, to name a few.
Among the notables was the famous 'Jimmy Titmus' heavyweight Boxing Champ of the 'Met', a most genial fellow who never threw his weight around, was well liked, (a little 'Punch Drunk') and 'Tom Smith' Cruiser weight Champ. We had regular trainig 'Gym' nights and on one occasion I had a couple of rounds with Tom Smith as 'Practice'.Tom had recently had an 'Op' for 'Appendicitis' and we understood not to hit him around the stomach area, in the excitement of a 'Close In' I inadvertently hit Tom, around the Belt. The reaction was swift for me, and I failed to remember anything for the next 10 mins!

The 'Supt'.(Martin) was rarely seen except when on his way home via 'King Charles Street; (watch out 1 and 2 Specials) at 5pm each day, and as he was never in Uniform except for special occasions, he always patrolled in 'Civvies' and was difficult to spot, hence if you were caught 'Idling and Gossiping' (a Major Offence) you could expect a days pay or at least a severe reprimand. Discipline was very strict, these were hard times in the Thirties.

We were 'Bloodied' on our second week (Learning Beats) with the arrival of the 'Hunger Marchers' from 'Jarrow Scotland' who were determined to 'March on Parliament' which resulted in the famous riots around Parliament Square of that time. (More Later)

The Mess Room' had about 10 tables and the furthest from the door was a 'Special Table' reserved for the 2 oldest members in the Section House, who were approaching their 30 years of service and still single. They were 'Harry Thatcher', and 'Bill Wait', any youngster who placed his cutlery upon their table would find it quickly removed to another table, both were assigned to special duties, 'Harry Thatcher' was in the Houses of Parliament and 'Bill Waite' was appointed to be on the door (Uniform) at 'York House' St. James Palace, which was the Official Residence of the
'Crown Prince Edward the 'Prince of Wales' who later became the uncrowned King 'Edward the V111 and it was in this capacity at 'York House'(Early
Late and Night) that I have a special tale to tell about 'Bill' and the 'Prince'.

The story of the day was that on Night Duty after Midnight providing that 'His Royal Highness' had retired, and the Patrolling Officer (duty Inspector) had done his rounds, all was safe for 'Bill' to slip inside York House into the little office (which was manned in the daytime until
5pm by a Household member) put up his feet, and partake of the usual tea and sandwiches, followed by a possible snooze.
Inside the Office was also a small 'switchboard, that also had a direct link to 'AD'. There was also a 'Public line' which was left connected to the 'Prince's' room' after 5pm.
It was also about 1 am that 'Brownie the 'Sub' had descended from his quarters at 'AD' to the station Office informing the Duty Officer that he had decided to take a patrol around the Sub Division, and picking up the Section Sergeant, left the Station.
Of the 2 reserve men on duty, the 1st Reserve was 'PC Curle' (known as 'Curly') who would 'Have a 'Go' at anything and promptly decided to notify 'all stations' that the 'Sub was Out'
realising that 'Bill' was probably near to the 'Land Of Nod' gently connected by the 'direct line' to York House, but it appeared that 'Bill'
was not quite alert enough to observe the slow winking eye on the 'switchboard; and failing to answer, 'Curly' decided to attack via the
public line.The next thing was that 'Bill' was startled by the continuous chatter of the switchboard indicating that 'HRH' was jumping up and down on his telephone prestle switch which indicated something amiss.
Tiptoeing up the stairs 'Bill' knocked gently on the Prince's door to receive a gentle command to 'Come In'. 'Bill' then enquired 'Did you
want me your Royal Highness??' to which the Prince replied 'Yes is your name Bill??'Replying in the affirmative, the Prince then asked 'Who is your Sub??' On being told that he was the Superior Station officer, the Prince replied 'Well Bill, I have to inform you that your 'Sub' is out'

Cheers for now, more later, a little about 'AW'
George Sharp PC 149A
Wt. No. 121517


The above photo is taken from a very old newspaper cutting in the 'Sunday Pictorial' dated October 16. 1932. and refers to an incident at Trafalgar Square.
I am the Officer on the right of the photo, the other Officer if my memory serves me correctly was named 'Phipps' and he came to my aid on this occasion when things were cutting up a bit rough.
The cutting was retrieved from a photographic collection owned by my daughter and I was unaware of its existence until recently. Very tattered, torn, spotted and brown stained, I have worked on the press cutting using my 'Mac' (which is well known for its superiority when using Graphics) together with 'Adobe Photoshop' and my 'Scanner' hoping that it will transmit as an attachment satisfactorily.
Notice the Uniform referred often as 'Ceremonial Dress'when in fact it was correctly named a 'Tunic'. It was Regulation Dress in the Spring and Autumn, very warm and 'Flannel' lined. There were 2 issues, the ' Best' was for day duty and 'Ceremonial' the other(Secondhand) for 'nights'. The incident at Trafalgar Square, occurred when Sir. Oswald Moseley a Fascist, and Sympathiser of 'Adolph Hitler' was holding a meeting assisted by his thugs who all wore the 'Fascist' Uniform with a Red Arm Band depicting the 'Swastika Emblem'. Giving the 'Fascist Salute' and strutting around in typical German Army 'Goose Step' manner.
These 'Uniformed Thugs' would interfere with any stubborn interjector and evict them from the crowd in support of Sir Oswald causing severe disturbances.
The Govt. eventually stopped this 'Joker' (Sir Oswald) by passing a Law that made it an offence for any person to appear in public wearing a Political Uniform.
Now it was around midday on the Saturday the square was full of listeners. sympathisers, and objectors. We expected trouble as usual, the'Mounted' at 'GY' were on alert, and the bench seats around the square were fully occupied except for one bench seat that was fully occupied by one individual who decided that he wanted the full seat to himself and lay sprawled full length, and fast asleep.
Observing the fully occupied seat I decided to put things to rights.
Now in those days with severe unemployment, many of the layabouts were destitute, unshaven, and unclean. Some were also covered in 'lice',the seats were washed down by 'Carbolic' every night by the 'Westminster 'CC' and we never touched the layabouts by hand, if this could be avoided,for fear of contamination, we therefore usually nudged them to wakefulness by a gentle nudge of our foot on their feet.
This individual however was smartly dressed, did not appear to come into this category of a 'Down and Out, but nevertheless the same tactics were used out of habit I guess, and raising my right foot hit the bench seat, tapping the seat very firmly, then moved my foot to tap his instep telling him to 'Wake Up'.
It required this action twice to have any effect, and it was at the second attempt that I heard a woman's hysterical voice loudly exclaiming behind me 'How dare you kick that man, I saw you deliberately kick him', again the woman repeated the statement causing nearby persons to gather into a small crowd and watch the fun. With the usual interjections things began to look awkward.
Now to raise ones foot to the height of the Park Bench Seat then move the foot into a tapping motion whilst maintaining balance on the left foot could put me slightly off balance, but at no time did such a brutal act as 'Kicking' occur, 'Your Worship'.... nevertheless by this time the sleeper was now awake and fully aware of the situation deciding he also was going to 'Have a Go' at me shouting that I did kick him which I denied , he then said 'What are you going to do about it?? You haven't got the guts of a louse!!.
This last statement finalised the issue, and grabbing the individual by the shoulder I said 'Your Nicked for Obstruction' .
At 13 months service, this was to be my first arrest in the 'Job'by this time I was assisted by the other PC who came to my aid and together we 'Frogmarched' the individual to 'AD' .
We had a Station Van, but there were no cars etc to come to your aid to assist in transferring a prisoner to the 'Nick' in those days, and the 10 Min. walk to 'AD' gave me time to assess the situation and decide if my original charge of 'Obstruction' might not stick. It was weak in
the least, and then it hit me. The Metropolitan Police Act of 1839 was the one...' Insulting Words and Behaviour likely to cause a 'Breach of the Peace'
Now this Act which I believe has long been superseded was made at the time of Sir Robert Peel. It catered for a multitude of sins and we called it the 'Breathing Act' and as its name implies you could be done for 'breathing',but the strict discipline involved with it prevented such abuse, but the fact remained that under that particular section any person creating any act (swearing etc ) or behaving in such manner as to cause an offence to any member of the passing public resulting in reaction or 'Breach of the Peace' was invoking that section and an arrest justified.
I know for a fact that there was one person annoyed by the activities . It was a woman wasn't it ??.
So it was that we arrived at 'AD' with our 'Charge' laying the information before the Station Inspector the kindly Inspector Mr Burket, who being satisfied with my complaint completed the 'Charge Sheet',confined the Prisoner to the Cells, then phoned Bow Street Court to enquire if they could take a case at that late hour of the day, it was by now around 1-15pm. and the option of holding the prisoner all night possibly over the week end in the Cells was not favoured.
Bow Street agreed to the request and I nipped up to the canteen for refreshments and a 'Cuppa' making my way up to Bow Street for the 2pm session.
Being just out of Probation (13 months) I was a bit shaky giving my evidence, the Magistrate of the day was sympathetic however, prompting me by asking if the behaviour was disturbing or was anyone annoyed?? to which I replied in the affirmative, and a conviction obtained.

George Sharp Ex PC 149'A'
Wt No. 121517

LEFT: My home in the early 30's... Alpha Delta Section House (Arrowed)

Here is an aerial photograph of the old 'AD' Section House (Arrowed)in which we lived in the 'Thirties'.
The original photo , from which I have selected a portion, was taken around 1996 during the time of the excavations for the new underground line at Westminster Station. Hoarding can be seen around the base of the buildings in Bridge Street.
My cubicle was in the front of this building on the 3rd floor from which I was able to look Northward out over the AD forecourt and out over towards 'Backhall' C.O. watching the coming and going of the 'Flying Squad' on which I was to serve in later times.
Our proximity to 'Big Ben' can be seen, and its chimes every quarter an hour were hard to become
accustomed to in the early stages as far as sleep was concerned, but like all things we soon became accustomed.
In front of the Section House facing South towards us as we look at it once stood a large Office Block, whose former presence can be seen by the weathering and shading of the Stock Bricks and has apparently been demolished for the Underground excavations. This Office Block was in close
proximity, about 5 feet away from our windows,.
Opposite my Cubicle across the passageway was Pc Joe Pringle (cant remember his number)and we often used to raise his window to 'Chat Up' the Office girls, and it is PC. Joe Pringle that I have a tale to tell.
Joe, who was about 2 yrs. my senior, was an 'old boy' of a famous school, which shall be nameless, frequently seen wearing his old school tie, and Joe's one ambition was to get into the CID. Having applied he was overjoyed to find himself appointed 'Winter Patrol'. He was very keen and was often ribbed about this.
Joe was awakened just after midnight one early morning and informed that a message had been received that a Gazetted and very much 'wanted' man had been seen loitering in Trafalgar Square. The CID had no one on duty, and Joe was the only possibility. Would he go up and try to find this man. He was easy to identify as he only had 'One Eye and One Arm'.

Joe immediately dressed and took off. After about 90 mins. Joe returned to report to the Station Officer that he had no luck and was going to retire to bed. The Station Officer not aware of events, questioned Joe more closely about his mission and the 'Penny Dropped'. Leaning close to Joe the Station Officer said "Aye laddie but you didn't look very far,had you raised your eyes upwards you would have seen him about 165 feet up on a very tall column" .

That's all for now Cheerio.

George. Sharp. ex Pc.149A
Wt.No. 121517



Westminster Abbey had 3 special Posts in my day in order to protect the Treasures within from thieves etc.
The Posts were 'Abbey Front' (North Entrance) the 'Deanery Cloisters'(South Entrance) and 'Poets Corner' (East Entrance) The latter was,'Night Duty' only posting being a short patrol about 100 yds in each direction. I have often wondered where he was when the 'Stone Of Scoone'was stolen??

We had numbered 'Special Posts' 1 to 6, but in addition there were named 'Special Posts' such as 'No.10.' 'Clock Tower' (Big Ben) 'India Office' (Armed Post), and as previously mentioned, the 'Abbey Front','Abbey Deanery', 'Cloisters', and 'Poets Corner' .

The term 'Abbey Front' was used incorrectly to mean the 'East Entrance' where most visitors entered. The Front of the Abbey is in fact as most people know the West Entrance.

It would be interesting to hear from the present day Officers how current postings compare to my days at 'AD' during the 1930s.

However it was the 'Deanery Cloisters' Special at the rear of the 'Abbey' that this article is about. This 'Special' was the most miserable and nerve racking in my experience during the hours of
darkness, eventually sending one very nice Pc. 'Round the Bend'.

The 'Deanery' approached by 'Deans Yard', was entered via a small archway with an iron gate, (See photograph RIGHT) with the 'Deanery'on theleft' On the right was a doorway from which a nice 'Cuppa' used to appear for the 'Late Turn'around 4pm, then on towards the 'Cloisters' or 'Abbey Graveyard' as I called it, which appeared interesting to me the first few times that I was posted, (in daylight I would add). These postings for me, fortunately, were always on a relieving basis for the day and never was I posted for the month,(it was terminated when I had about 6 months service anyway) but I was posted a couple of times 'Night Duty' which I quickly learnt was not for the 'Faint Hearted'. This posting was eventually terminated due to circumstances I am about to relate.

The rear door of the Abbey is at the North East corner of the 'Cloisters', and this had to be checked on commencing patrol,with the 'Chapter House' entrance on the east side. The South East corner of the 'Cloisters' with a prominent 'Effigy' on the wall also leads to Westminster School. (This Effigy was seen to move by a very agitated PC later on) .

The first couple of times posted I found it to be interesting studying the names of the numerous Abbots, Bishops and Monks named on the flagstones , or were they 'Gravestones' (I never found this one out)who appeared to be buried under the flagstones over the past 1000 years, and to me, there was no room left under those 'Gravestones' to bury a Cat!

It was a lonely posting after nightfall, daylight was not so bad as we had the occasional tourist who, making their way to the interesting'Chapter House' would sometimes stop and chat.In those days there were no 'Back Packers' , Aircraft travel was not on as far as overseas long haul flights were concerned. Tourists had to afford the fare by sea and were usually of the affluent variety.
It amazed me during my visit to the UK in 1966 when visiting my old haunts to the Abbey I encountered the large number of assembled 'Back Packers' in the Cloisters who were 'etching' also studying the 'Wall Effigies' and 'Flagstones' of the Cloisters, they would have been good company in my day. As I have said, as darkness closed down especially with the long winter nights around 4.30pm it became very lonely, the only relief being the patrolling Officer or the man on 2 beat in passing.

My first stint on night duty in the 'Cloisters', came in late 1931 around Xmas time. It was harrowing to say the least.
Parading at the usual 9-45pm for Night Duty in the Parade Room, the Section Sergeant called my number 'One Forty Nine'? I replied 'All Correct Sergeant' to which he replied 'Abbey Deanery'. Now my reply which was 'Thank You Sergeant' was not meant to be caustic but a ripple of laughter passed among the ranks, and an elderly Pc leant towards me and said quietly 'Watch out for the Abbey Ghost' I treated this remark as a joke, but it is surprising how a remark of that nature can rankle. I had heard about the 'Abbey Ghost' but treated it a superstition.

With 'Big Ben' striking 10pm making my way round the 'Abbey' to the rear I expected to see the 'Late Turn' Pc. whom I was to relieve, at the same time also to be told of anything unusual, but he had quickly disappeared into the night.
Making my way into the Deanery, then passing on to the 'Cloisters', the rear entrance to the Abbey at the North end of the Cloisters had to be checked on commencing patrol, along with the 'Chapter House' entrance on the east side. There was no lighting of course, the only scource of illumination was my 'Wooton' Lamp' carried normally on the Belt and easily detachable. Made of strong steel construction, weighing about 16 ounces , accumulator powered, it was quite an effective scource of light also on many occasions found to be an effective weapon by more than one Pc.

Having encircled the 'Cloisters' checking out that all was well, 'Big Ben' had struck 12 midnight, I remember sitting on a stone ledge around the cloisters wall feeling drowsy and with helmet in my hand I knew that if I fell asleep I would drop the helmet and so wake up, but there was no need, after sitting for few minutes I became aware of something or somebody watching me in the darkness. There was faint illumination from the sky onto the grass area in the centre of the 'Cloisters' but I could
discern nothing.

The remark of the elderly Pc. on parade came to me. Was it the 'Ghost'? Switching on my light I observed a nice sizeable 'rat' which quickly scampered away, but there was no figure in a white sheet.Nevertheless from then on, I decided to keep walking, looking anxiously towards refreshment time at 2am when 'Big Ben' with its strident tomes,would inform me of the much wanted break, and then it would be 'Hurry Up 6am'. and the finish with a quick scramble into bed before daybreak.

Things came to a head eventually when around 2 am one long night when the Pc posted to the 'Cloisters' appeared at Cannon Row very agitated declaring that the large 'Effigy' on the wall at the South East end of the Cloisters had moved, then spoke to him telling him 'To Prepare to meet Thy God' and I know that he was Tee Total.

The last thing we heard about this particular Pc. was that he had been cast 'Medically Unfit' and the 'Abbey Cloisters'Posting was closed down, the Iron gate at its entrance was being closed at night fall. It was a relief.

Cheers George .T. Sharp Ex 149A

Looking out for trams, shire horses and draymen who may require the call of nature!!!

I must apologise for the condition of this attachment photo
which was taken in the Autumn of 1932 (Note No1 Ceremonial Dress) by a
member of the public, while working the Victoria Embankment / Bridge Street
Westminster Point (Note 'Clock Tower' in the background).
The fellow who asked permission to take this photo was very nervous
of the approaching traffic behind him hence the shakiness.
This No1 Dress was only worn in Spring and Autumn, (Night Duty in
Summer Time dress No2) or for special Ceremonial Duties at other times.

This photo came to mind when recently reading a very nice article
in 'Verse' in the LPP Millennium Issue (page 80) 'Down Memory Lane'
issued by Pc Geoffrey Taylor, which related the problems we faced in those
days. Reference was made among others to the lovely 'shire horses' that
used to pull the 'brewers dray' loaded with beer.
On this particular 'traffic point', we had our full share of the
'brewers dray'
Pulled by 2 of these those magnificent 'Shires',(Strong Animals)
full of spirit, lively, but very docile in their beautifully maintained
harness with its gleaming 'brasses' they were a sight to behold. In regular
use in those days I believe they are only in use today for ceremonial
occasion or 'shows'

The 'dray' behind them was also immaculate, with the 'beer'
stacked in barrels behind the driver (drayman), and we facilitated their
progress as much as possible.

The Victoria Embankment was of course the direct route from the
'City' and 'BlackFriars' to Millbank Vauxhall and Western Suburbs and
the Embankment traffic was very heavy, at times difficult for one PC to
handle. Traffic lights had not appeared on 'A' Div. in those times,
although in use elsewhere in the 'Met' as I have mentioned before. In fact
I believe 'A' was the last division to have 'ATS'

Often when working this 'point' with your back turned towards the
'Embankment' traffic, it was common to suddenly hear among the noise of the
trams and traffic a loud piercing whistle from behind. Turning your head
you could then perceive from behind the traffic queue about a hundred yards
away the 'brewers dray'' approaching, making the slight 'up gradient' with
the 'drayman' perched high above, twirling his 'whip' above his head to
draw your attention and requesting priority. This we did as soon as
possible to prevent the horses being brought to a standstill, champing at
the 'bit', and very anxious to get moving, with their large 12 inch hooves
clawing at the 'tarmac'.

An interesting point concerning the 'drayman'.

Under the 'Metropolitan Police Act 1839' in use in those days it
was an offence to 'Urinate in a Public Place' with Power of Arrest, as I no
doubt presume it is under der the present law, but the difference was that
the 'drayman was
exempt from committing that offence, provided he used discretion and
'Urinated' between the wheels of the 'dray' and kept himself with his back
turned to the public view as much as possible.
This was to excuse him from leaving his animals unattended when
required to answer the 'call of nature'
in an emergency, for although placid by nature, there was always the risk
of some 'wag' of a motorist creating a 'backfire' for fun, and in the
event of those animals 'bolting' there would have been no stopping them.
Although the 'drayman' was usually accompanied by a second person, it would
require at least 2 men with a strong hand to calm those animals.

The traffic point was a noisy one, although the 'trams' were away
from the 'point' and not controlled, they were very noisy with their
screeching of wheels as they negotiated the turn to and from the Bridge and
Embankment. Yes it was Sixpence all day on those trams and for that
priceless sum of a 'tanner' you could travel all over London hopping from
tram to tram, providing you travelled between 9am and 6pm, and those tram
routes reached to the far distant suburbs at all points of the compass.

The yellow and white 'Accident' book mentioned did not eventuate as
far s I can remember until late 1932 The 'White Book' was for 'Damage Only'
the 'Yellow Book' was for 'Personal Injury' accident, and they were a
blessing, you just had to enter up in the margins provided.

Prior to this everything had to be reported in 'long hand' in the
small white pocket book in pencil, and as correctly stated 'no eraser'. You
had to cross mistakes out and initial same, the reason being that in the
event of being asked to produce your pocket book in court, any obvious
erasing would be a target for the defence. You would not get very far when
reporting off duty one presented the pocket book to the Station Officer
with a badly written report indicating erasers had bee used, It was not
uncommon for the Station Inspector especially if he was having a 'bad day'
to 'throw' the pocket book onto the charge room floor with the expression
'Re Write it'. (and this you did in your own time).

I well remember an incident during my first week. We were 'Learning
Beats' but for the first 4 days had to attend 'Bow Street Court' for

Returning from Court back to 'AD' at the close of Session about
4pm, there were 4 of us as mentioned before 'Bert' Treeby'555'A'. 'Alfie
Howes' 121'A'/ 'Hugh' Brewer 172'A'
and myself.
Our passage lay via The Strand, Villiers Street and Victoria
Embankment, and as we prepared to cross the intersection of Horse Guards
Avenue, there was an almighty crash and 2 cars collided at the
intersection. There was nothing else for it but to get on with it.
A toss of the coin it was decided for Bert Treeby 555'A' to take one
vehicle whilst I took the other, and I would be the reporting Officer.,
meaning that after copying the full pars of Vehicle No2 from 'Bert' an entry
had to be also added into my book that 'Pars of Vehicle No2 were taken by
Pc Treeby 555'A' and copied from his pocket Book. This entry then had to be
initialled by Pc 555'A' (What a lot of Madame)
All of that 12 weeks training at Peel House then swung into play.
Yep you guessed it . I forgot to take the drivers licence pars of vehicle

Kindly Inspector Mr Burket, the Station Officer Late Turn at AD was
most sympathetic at this recruit getting it wrong but. I would have to
learn and obtain those pars somehow before he would accept the report, and
this in my own time.

Now the driver concerned resided at 'Barnes' SW13. and only about
100 yds from 'VB' Barnes Police Station. Had I been a experienced PC it would have
been simple to ring up 'VB' Barnes station and requested a PC to just take
a short walk and obtain those pars, but 'Oh No', no one suggested that, I
was informed that I had to travel to Barnes and obtain those pars for

So it was that dressed in my best 'bib and tucker' after a short
tea break I walked up to Trafalgar Square , boarded a No.9 bus to 'Barnes'
(price sixpence) and more by luck than judgement found the 'driver' at home
who after supplying me with those missing particulars offered me a nice

My report now complete this was handed to the 'Night Duty Station
Officer who, after scrutinising very carefully accepted same. I never
forgot this incident and never forgot the drivers pars in the very many
accident reports that followed in my 'tag car' years that followed.

We always commenced our reports with the words , 'I beg to
report' written in long hand. We always 'begged to report' everything, and
I often wondered why.

Yes we also carried 3 small books in the wallet for easy reference
(not 2) The blue one was 'Summons Heading' giving a quick reference to the
Section and Act for any Process report. The yellow book was entitled
'Duty Hints'
giving short access to the various Acts we may require, and the 'Grey Book'
was a quick reference to any 'Fire Alarm' 'Water and Gas Mains etc and
positions of interest on the ground, positions we may require in an
emergency Price Threepence each they were useful.

Before I close this article an item of interest comes to mind.
Thinking of those Cold Winters and my days working Nos 5 and 6
Special Posts which terminated at the corner of the garden wall at the
rear of No10 on the Horse Guards Parade . At this juncture there was a
'Shelter' with a Cupboard 'For the use Of' fitted onto the garden wall into
which we placed our 'capes' when not in use etc.

On those cold winter mornings it was not unusual for a nice
steaming hot jug of cocoa to emerge from the rear garden door of No 10 to
be placed into that cupboard. If I remember correctly the Prime Minister of
the day was Mr Ramsay McDonald followed by Mr. Stanley Baldwin. Can any one
tell me. Does this practice still exist??.

Bye for now. George Sharp Ex Pc. 149A
Wt No. 121517
27 Taipari Road,
Te Atatu Peninsula
Auckland 1008


The 'pram' was a nickname for the 'Hand Ambulance' (see photo below right) and in those days, as far as I can recall, one of these appliances was kept at each divisional station. The one at 'AD' was kept behind the large green yard door.

The purpose of this appliance was for the conveyance of those persons who were unable to transport themselves physically to the 'Nick'
under Police escort, were violent and needing restraint, or were not a suitable case for the public ambulance to convey them.

This apparatus consisated of a 'Stretcher' complete with straps, blankets, and a rubber sheet, also a 'perambulater' type folding hood at its head, for protection from curious persons.
This stretcher was then placed upon a mainframe, supported by two large wheels and a bogey wheel for steerage.

It was late September, 1931 my second week in the 'Job' and learning beats, posted 'Late Turn' 2-10pm on 'One Beat' and under the careful guiidance of PC 133A Green who was about 15 years my senior.'

About 9pm it was decided to have a last look round the beat, we were walking along the Victoria Embankment on the wide pavement nearest to the river, at a steady 2 1/2 mph. towards Hungerford Bridge.

Being late September, the autumn wind was being felt blowing up river, it was dark, with street lighting on.The 'Down and Outs' were beginning to appear on the park bench seats complete with their newspapers for warmth, taking care to remain in an upright position uintil we had passed by, before stretching out to full length on the seat, hoping that the Night Duty PC, would pass them by on the other side of the road.

So it was, that as we approched 'Cleopatra's Needle' we came upon a bench seat that appeared positively full of newspapers that demanded

Slowly removing the newspapers we came upon the figure of a woman of about 60yrs lying full length, in her arm she clutched an almost empty
flagon of Cheap Red Australian Wine, known as 'Red Biddy', and was out to the world, obviously hoping to dream her dreams away until dawn.

'Well if it isnt Dear Old Annie' said PC Green who recognised her. A gentle shake at first yelded no response from the hapless victim.More shaking becoming more progressivly violent, began to obtain a response until 'Annie' suddenly became aware of the situation and began to let rip.

'Annie', resenting disturbance, then began swearing, and proved that she could easily swear every swear word in the English language over a good 3 minutes without repeating herself , she quickly informed us in swear words that we both were of doubtful parentage and born outside the blanket.

It was clearly a case of 'Drunk and Incapable' also 'Drunk and Disorderly' and 'Annie' would have to be taken in to the 'Nick'. It was obvious that 'Annie' could not walk of her own volition.

Pc.Green looked at me and asked me to go back to 'AD' and collect the 'Pram'. Returning to AD, I notified the Stn. Inspector of the need in order that an entry be made in the "OB". I collected the 'Pram' from behind the doors in the yard and commenced the trudge back to 'Cleopatra's Needle'.

On arrival it was obvious that the 'Wags' were in attendance by their various remarks. Laying the stretcher on the pavement we then lifted 'Annie' from the seat onto the stretcher strapping her in for safe keeping, also taking extra care not to break the 'Red Biddy' flagon in the process. We then commenced the steady upward trudge along the enbankment towards 'AD'

On turning into New Scotland Yard from the Embankment, there is a slight 'Down' gradient, 'AD' rests in a slight hollow, which made the going easier, the 'Pram' gaining slight momentum, but still under control(so we thought).

'Annie' was still blowing her top with every swear word in the book as we approached the entrance of AD. PC Green said 'This will wake her up' and swung the 'Pram' sharply left and at right angles to the pavement.
All well and good, except that the momentum of the pram was fast enough for the wheels to hit the kerb rather violently.
Now I don't know whether we had failed to replace the stretcher back into the 'Sockets' of the pram correctly or that the impact with the 'kerb' was the cause, but results were electrifying.

The 'Stretcher' left the mainframe with a speed that would have given the inventor of the modern fighter plane ejector seat some food for thought! The head of the stretcher coming to rest against the bottom of the 'AD' steps, whilst the feet were still up on the 'Pram' the whole stretcher including 'Annie' being at an angle of 45 deg. across the pavement, whilst a startled PC on the door looked on in amazement.
It was then that PC.Green went into 'reverse' with the result that the stretcher left the mainframe and crashed down on to the pavement.

By now 'Annie's' screams had alerted both the Stn. Inspector and the 'Reserve' man to appear at the station steps and between all 5 of us we carried 'Annie' complete with stretcher in to the Charge Room, sitting her up on to the bench seat against the wall where she did not stay for long without collapsing into a horizontal position.

'Annie' was then charged and placed into a warm cell for the night.
I replaced the 'Pram' into its stable then booked off duty. I certainly enlarged my vocabulary with some new words from the English language that night.

George.T.Sharp. 149A /Wt.No.121517


A few months ago, an article appeared in the LPP Magazine requesting the origin of the expression 'Look Out! Cods Eyes is about'.

The request was suitably answered,in that it related to the Superintendent of the day in the 1950 era whenever that gentleman,(the Superintendent) who had prominent protruding Eyes and known by the nickname 'Cods Eyes' (who shall be nameless for this article) decided on his own bat,to go' Walkabouts'and patrol the Sub Division.

As older members of that era will know, in the event of any superior officer above the rank of Inspector deciding to patrol, around the Division, the telephone became very busy and all Sub div. station such as AW.AR,POW. BP.AH. would receive a telephone call from AD, and upon lifting the receiver would receive a blunt message saying 'Look Out! ??? is about'.
My first experience with 'Cods Eyes' goes back about 70 years to the winter of 1932/3 when 'Cods Eyes' was a Sergeant at 'GY' (Gt. Scotland Yard'), and had already acquired that nickname.

It was approaching Xmas Time , I was posted to No.1 Beat which in those days covered that piece of 'Prime Real Estate' stretching North to South from Northumberland Avenue to Bridge Street also East to West from Whitehall to Victoria Embankment.

England had decided to give a very fine display of its best winter weather in the form of a very thick 'Smog' or a 'Pea Souper' fog.

I do not think England suffers from 'Smog' these days but in those days a 'Smog' meant a 'Fog' so thick that the Bus Conductor was compelled to walk in front of the Bus following the 'white line' with a torch to assist the driver. Pedestrians could easily collide with one
another suddenly looming out of the 'Fog' , usually holding a handkerchief or other material over their mouth, persons walking would feel a
stinging sensation around the eyelashes that would be covered in the wet black stinging moisture, and clothing would be covered with a wet dirty moisture that resembled fine sooty rain.

And so it was that I found myself entering Gt Scotland Yard from Whitehall around 9.15 am on this foggy morning looking forward to the scheduled refreshment break that would be around 10.15 am. when I realised that a call into 'GY' might yield a 'Cuppa' from the to 5 pm staff .

The building known as 'GY' situated on the North side of Gt.Scotland Yard was in fact the Mounted Section of the 'Met' stabling around 12 or more horses on 2 levels. These stables were originally owned by Lord Lonsdale. Entrance was via an impressive archway leading to the small arena where the horses were exercised and the 'Strappers' carried out their chores.

At the end of the archway on the left, was the 'Mounted' Office and on the right was the Office of the 'DTTO No1' (District Traffic and Transport Officer No.1.District) commonly known as the 'Ditto's Office', wherein reposed the 'Ditto, Ch.Insp. (Chesty) Hill a very tall and large built man, hence his nickname of 'Chesty' and his staff, comprising as far as I can remember Stn Sgt Walker (Later Supt. at Hendon Driving School, around the 1950s) , Stn.Sgt. Amie. (Communications Officer) and 'Sgt. 'Cods Eyes', the latter was a real down to earth London 'Cockney' and did not suffer fools gladly, but was kindness in itself. Born in London a Cockney from the South Bank myself, we seemed to hit it off.

Tapping on the door, sticking my head in, at the same time giving the customary greeting, 'Allo Allo Allo, Morning All' I must have appeared a sorry sight with my red rimmed eyes looking towards the desk whereupon reposed the steaming jug and the cups, causing some humour.

After the usual banter and drinking my warm 'Cuppa' I suddenly heard 'Cods Eyes' address me with the remark 'One Forty Nine!! that 'armlet' you are wearing is filthy, isn't it about time you gave it a wash?? and Sgt. 'Cods Eyes' was referring to the Blue and White striped Duty Armlet that we wore on the left sleeve of the uniform to denote to all and sundry that the wearer was on duty. In this case I must confess, my armlet was most certainly in need of a little maintenance, and the dirty black moisture of the 'Fog' did not help matters.

When joining the 'Force we were issued with 2 armlets. It was a case of 'One Off, One in the Wash' but unfortunately I had either mislaid or lost Armlet No2, the result being that on completion of duty the'Armlet returned to the pocket for further use therefore not being replaced by a clean one.

Ruefully surveying the dirty armlet and apologising I explained the position to 'Cods Eyes' who then replied 'Well get it washed and we will attend to it'.

No more was thought about this matter other than to promptly wash the offending article, until about 3 days later, when parading at 5.45am
for 'early turn' , the Section Sergeant on appointing me to No.1 beat which for me was on a monthly posting, informed me that a note in the 'Scrap Book' requested me to call into 'GY' sometime during the morning to report to Sgt ??? ('Cods Eyes').

Accordingly timing my visit to coincide with 'Cuppa' time I duly attended 'GY', when 'Cods Eyes ' after surveying my clean armlet, then
opened a drawer and drew out a package which he presented, at the same time saying 'There will be no more excuses will there'??. The package contained 6 bright clean blue and white striped armlets each complete with buckles.

I did not meet up with him again for years until 1953 when I was an original member of the 'Special Escort Motorcycle Squad', formed in the first instance in March 1953 especially for the protection of Yugoslavia President 'Marshall Tito' on his visit to the U.K.

Having escorted 'Marshal Tito' to Buckingham Palace we were parked at Spur Road Gardens opposite the 'Palace' when the Supt 'Cods Eyes', who was 'mounted', also complete with helmet and sword, rode over to us and had a few pleasantries, as was his custom. I told him that I was sorry, but I did not have a dirty armlet to wear on this occasion, and to my surprise he remembered. As he rode away I felt sure that I could ride my motorcycle better than he could ride his horse!!

Cheers for now.

George Sharp Ex 149A.
Wt. No. 121517

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It is well known that you cannot have efficiency without discipline
but at times it can be petty, as was the case I think on one
Sunday afternoon in late November 1932.

Finding myself at the intersection of Whitehall with Gt.
Scotland Yard ( Late Turn No.1 Beat) I had decided to seek shelter
from the rain which had been almost continuous throughout the day.

The only thing in favour of the rain was the fact that it was
keeping the 'fog' at bay, and the hour being 4pm, darkness was not
far away.

Wearing my great coat, also my 'oilskin cape' which was of
the new issue, its predecessor being of a rubberised fabric which
leaked at the shoulders, I was managing to keep myself dry, but
decided to seek further shelter from the neighbouring row of nearby
shop doorways.

There was a row of about 6 shops in Whitehall extending from
the 'Pub' on this corner towards Trafalgar Square, and one of the
shopkeepers had kindly allowed his shop blind to remain extended over
the footway for the weekend, and I decided that this would at
least keep the rain off, so, underneath this I took shelter with my
back to the shop window, and then surveyed the scene.

It was at the least , a very desolate scene indeed, here
I was standing at the 'hub' of the major political offices of the greatest city
and indeed the greatest nation in the World at that time, but what a
lonely scene, the only disturbance being the swish of the passing
bus or taxi.

Tomorrow about just 16 hours away the scene would be a hive
of bustling activity I thought. Even the mounted 'Horse Guards' at
Whitehall Palace had drawn themselves well back into their horse
boxes to keep out of the rain.

'Backpackers' were not in existence in those days and as far
as I could see at first, not a pedestrian in sight, or was I

I thought I could discern some movement down Whitehall
around the Banqueting Hall, it looked like a pedestrian as it indeed
proved to be, walking smartly towards me, and a few seconds later
the figure in blue raincoat was identified.

Goodness gracious, it was 'Brownie', (Sub.Insp .Brown.) What
in heavens name was he doing out on such an afternoon, when he could
be in front of his fire in his married quarters at 'AD' with his
slippers on and reading a book??. No doubt all of the 'Panic Buttons'
at 'AD' had been pressed to alarm all posts in the area that 'The
'Sub' was out ! "

Pretending not to observe 'Brownie' until he was
approximately 30 yards away I emerged from under the shop blind,
walked towards him, stopped, and performed the customary ' All Correct
My action and salute was performed in such a smart manner
that I felt sure would bring a gleam into the eye of not only the
Peel House drill instructor Sgt. Fincham, but any Brigade of Guards
drill instructor.

Unfortunately I had made one mistake, in that I had decided
to select about the only puddle that adorned the pavements of
Whitehall, the result being a splash that cause an eruption of brown
fluid that completely covered both our trouser legs.

I felt the fluid splash up on my lower leg, and I am sure
that 'Brownie' did likewise. He lowered his eyes to his feet, then in
answer to my 'All Correct Sir' raised his eyes slowly up my trousers
then up to my eyes, replying through gritted teeth 'Is it' ?? Don't
stand under the 'blind' boy, it looks bad'.
With that he then stormed off into the direction of Trafalgar Square.

Oh well, you loose some, and you win some!

Cheers and a Merry Christmas to all.
George Sharp, 149A.
A.B.C. D.T.5. CO Wt No 121517
27 Taipari Road, Te Atatu Peninsula,