Dixon of Dock Green to the rise of the Plastic Bobby

Peter started by describing the life of the beat Bobby in the late 1970s, when communications were done via the police box with the blue flashing light. It could take several hours for a Bobby on foot to respond to a crime if his foot patrol had taken him away from the box. To illustrate his talk Peter had brought along examples of the traditional policeman’s helmet and truncheon. Member were encouraged to try on the helmet but discouraged from trying out the truncheon. Although the public like the idea of the Bobby on the beat, it was not an efficient use of man power and things had to change. Crime reporting soared with the wide spread use of mobile phones and it was necessary to make more use of computers to record, analyse and prioritorise these reported incidents. Domestic violence and crimes against women became top priority and burglars would be pushed down the list if the man power wasn’t available. The Health and Safety of police officers is now of much more concern and all now wear armoured vests and use the updated side-handled baton. An example of which was inspected by the members. The talk ended with the usual question and answer session.

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