City of London Police Commissioner interview completes museum's audio guide
Visitors to the City of London Police Museum at Guildhall can now hear the force’s most senior officer talk about the unique challenges of policing the Square Mile.
A series of interviews with Commissioner Ian Dyson have been added to the museum’s audio guide, during which he explains recent technological advances in policing and what, in his view, are the key qualities required for a police officer.
The interviews put the finishing touch to the audio guide, which includes accounts from serving and retired police officers who talk about major incidents that they have witnessed, or attended.
They include the Moorgate tube disaster in November 1975, which killed 43 people, and the bombing of the Central Criminal Court (Old Bailey) in 1973.
One former female police officer explains the challenges that she faced in the 1970s, while another retired officer talks about racism from fans at football matches during his career in the Met Police in the 1980s.
The audio guide also features several historical events, including the Houndsditch Murders in 1910; the story of Catherine Eddowes, who was murdered in Mitre Square by Jack the Ripper in 1888; and the Olympic gold medal won in 1920 by the City of London Police’s tug-of-war team.
The purpose-built Museum features several displays, including a collection of uniforms dating back to the 1840s; homemade weapons that were seized by police officers; a replica of the gun used in the Houndsditch Murders; and an interactive film of Catherine Eddowes in her police cell.
Ian Dyson, Commissioner of the City of London Police, said:
“The City of London Police Museum is a unique attraction and we are proud to be involved with it.
“We work hard to educate the local, and wider, communities, about the relevance and expertise of the force, and the museum allows us to do this by sharing our distinctive history.
“The audio guide project is a fascinating insight into the working lives of various officers from throughout the force and for my part, I am delighted to be able to share my experiences.”
Graham Packham, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Culture, Heritage and Libraries Committee, said:
“The audio guide will certainly provide visitors to the museum with some genuine revelations about how the Square Mile has been policed since 1839.
“The first-hand accounts from officers who were caught up in, often, frightening, major incidents are particularly valuable and now, with Ian Dyson’s interviews available, the audio guide will feel complete.”
The audio guide is available free-of-charge on a handset, which can be collected from the Museum’s entrance. The interviews, personal histories, and stories can be accessed by tapping the handsets on a series of activation points situated around the Museum.
The City of London Corporation, which hosts the City of London Police Museum in the Guildhall complex, invests over £100m every year in heritage and cultural activities of all kinds. It is the UK’s largest funder of cultural activities after the government, the BBC, and Heritage Lottery Fund.
It is also developing Culture Mile between Farringdon and Moorgate – a multi-million-pound investment which will create a new cultural and creative destination for London over the next 10 to 15 years. This includes £110m funding to support the Museum of London’s move to West Smithfield and £2.5m to support the detailed business case for the proposed Centre for Music.
Notes for Editors:
Belinda Harding, retired City of London Police Officer; Peter Clarke, former City of London Police Inspector; and Simon Stephenson, City of London Police Museum Guide and former Metropolitan Police Officer, are available for media interview. Please contact Andrew Buckingham (see below) for further details.
For further information and images of the City of London Police Museum, please contact:
Andrew Buckingham, Media Officer, City of London Corporation
Tel: 020 7332 1452 / 07795 333060
About the City of London Corporation
The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk