West Midlands Police

West Midlands Police Museum

Police History Society

Staffordshire Police history

The story of policing
(aimed at schoolchildren)

History of police dogs

Police Federation

The Police and the Black Country

by Mick Pearson

Control of the Police

The Local Government Act of 1888 left control of the borough police in the hands of Watch Committees, which often met weekly. They were responsible for their police forces, including in theory, appointment of new Constables. There were examples of confrontation between Watch Committees and Head (Chief) Constables. A classic example in Birmingham occurred in 1880 when the Chief Constable instructed his men to start arresting "quiet drunkards" instead of letting them go on their way. There were other similar confrontations in Birmingham, which ultimately led to a promise that Major Bond (the then Chief Constable) would "toe the party line".



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