Policing in the Sixities

Our speaker this evening, Alan Wright, was an accidental policeman. Looking for an alternative to his actuarial training he saw a Bobby patrolling outside of his office window and thought that that may give him the opportunity to escape.

After enrolling as a cadet with the Met in the 60’s he was taught how to march and and how to fight before being let loose on the streets of Soho and Mayfair after just one months mentoring.

As well as being a time of great social change Alan explained how the 60’s were a period of transition for policing in the capital as the force evolved from an institution which was still largely Victorian in its outlook and practises in response to the challenges posed by organised crime and the emergence of the illegal drugs trade.

Part of the team which brought the Krays to justice and of the Chinese Heroin Squad Alan saw his share of action and he was able to share memories with us which highlighted both the lighter and darker sides of policing during this period.

Alan later went on to lecture at the Institute of Criminal Justice Studies, University of Portsmouth, and is currently an Honorary Research Fellow at Keele University. He is the author of ‘Policing: an introduction to concepts and practice’ and ‘Organised Crime’ and now lives in Wolverhampton.

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