Policing then and now – changes over the 70 years of The Queen’s reign
Main article content
Change over seven decades is inevitable and Leicestershire Police in 2022 would be unrecognisable to an officer from 1952.
But what hasn’t changed is who all those officers have sworn allegiance to – Queen Elizabeth II.
As the country marks The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, we’ve looked back at what the force was like in 1952 compared to now…
Charles Street police station on Coronation Day
The force was in two - Leicestershire & Rutland Constabulary and Leicester City Police, and as such there were two Chief Constables – John Albert Taylor CBE, QPM was Chief of the counties force and Oswald John Buxton Cole was Chief of the city force
City had a strength of 256, County had a strength of 420
Mobile police stations were new in action, having being introduced in 1951
The first woman Special Constable, Edna Taylor, joined as a volunteer
Uniform was different for men and women, with WPCs – as they were then – given skirts, heels and a handbag as part of their uniform
The force got 22 Morris Eights
Top - WPC uniform in 1955 and, bottom - a mobile police station
The force became Leicester & Rutland Constabulary in 1967, before changing again 1974 to Leicestershire Constabulary. The change to Leicestershire Police came in June 2013 when the Royal Notary Consent was granted
2,242 police officers police a 2,500 sq. kilometre area, with the support of 200 Police Community Support Officers – which were introduced nationally in 2002 – and 1,200 police staff roles
The force area is split into nine Neighbourhood Policing Units
Uniform is unisex, with force issue trousers and shirts being worn by both men and women. Stab vests are worn when officers are out on patrol and every officer has a body worn video to record interactions and evidence
Technological advancements have changed the way crimes are committed and therefore changed the way crimes are solved - in ways that wouldn’t have been believed in the 1950s. Mobile telephones, the internet, computers and smart phones mean a large part of the demand on policing now is crimes committed digitally – as well as digital evidence largely contributing to prosecution cases.
CCTV, online banking and DNA profiling with fingerprints and bodily fluids have all been developed over the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. Creating new ways to commit crime over the years, it also means we are more equipped than ever to solve crime and put those responsible behind bars.