We Will Remember Them

As we approach Remembrance Sunday it is time to reflect on those RDC officers who were killed during the conflicts, either overseas or on duty.

To that end, BTPHG Committee Member Ed Thompson has been working on our World War Two Roll of Honour, where his research has led us to several additional names. In addition we have more details of the officers in a new PDF document which Ed has compiled and can also be found on that page.


Additional related pages:

BTPHG Roll of Honour

In Remembrance 1914 – 1918




Great Train Robbery Confidential: The Cop and the Robber Follow New Lines of Enquiry

Another new BTP related book has recently been published and added to our virtual BookShelf.

Following on from his autobiography, An Inspector Recalls: Memoirs of a Railway Detective, retired BTP Detective Superintendent and BTPHG member Graham Satchwell has ventured into the true crime arena with his own investigation of the Great Train Robbery.

From the publishers website:
“In 1981, Detective Inspector Satchwell was the officer in charge of the case against Train Robber Tom Wisbey and twenty others. The case involved massive thefts from mail trains – similar to the Great Train Robbery of 1963 where £2.6 million was taken and only £400,000 ever recovered.

Thirty years later their paths crossed again and an unlikely partnership was formed, with the aim of revealing the truth about the Great Train Robbery.

This book reassesses the known facts about one of the most infamous crimes in modern history from the uniquely qualified insight of an experienced railway detective, presenting new theories alongside compelling evidence and correcting the widely accepted lies and half-truths surrounding this story.”

Graham adds:
“I have been working on the subject for a number of years, in a way, ever since 1981. In that year I had access to the entire Metropolitan Police Great Train Robbery archive, and started to get to know some of the people featured there. More recently, I have done a complete review of all the main published works and trawled several important untapped sources. During 2015 and 2016 I also had considerable help from an unexpected quarter – Train Robber Tom Wisbey. The results are striking and will certainly impact those who have an interest in this crime – it turns over ‘accepted facts’, exposes a great deal of accepted falsehood and generally puts ‘the cat amongst the pigeons.’

Great Train Robbery buffs might have viewed the Channel 4 TV special programme about my investigation on Monday 12th August, it was revelatory, but very short of what my book reveals.”

‘The Great Train Robbery – Confidential’ is published by The History Press and widely available in print or ebook format from 1st October 2019.

Birmingham New Street, c.1920's.

Birmingham New Street, c.1920’s.

(click to enlarge)


This photo comes from the BTP Collection and was recently rediscovered by Ed Thompson. Ed says “The photo is printed on card on the reverse it reads ‘Railway Police New Street Station Birmingham. Taken in the 1920’s. Joseph Twentyman is second left, back row.’

History Group records show a J. Twentyman, who was then based at Carlisle, being awarded his Long Service and Good Conduct medal in 1954. Birmingham New Street  had a London and North Western and Midland Railways Joint Police Station until 1923, when both railway companies were merged into the London Midland and Scottish.

Just one photo from our Constituent Forces photo gallery.

WW1 Centenary Memorial Service

Over 186,475 railway people from Britain and Ireland fought in World War One, on land, sea and in the air, and more than 18,957 of these gave their lives. On 14th May, 1919, in the presence of His Majesty King George V, over 7,000 railway people and families attended a service of remembrance in St Paul’s Cathedral “In memory of the railwaymen of Great Britain and Ireland who have died in the service of their country during the war 1914-1918”.

Now, a century later, the railway industry of Britain and Ireland will come together again in a service at Southwark Cathedral, London, to remember those that fell in the “Great War”.

The service, on 6th November 2019 at Southwark Cathedral, will be by invitation only, and a website has been set up to enable those wishing to register to receive an invitation.

Link:  WW1 Centenary Memorial Service



Arboretum Tree

BTP Arboretum Tree 2019

BTP tree on 'The Beat' (July 2013)

BTP tree on ‘The Beat’
(July 2013)













A post by Gary Wildman on Facebook last week provided a useful update on the progress of the BTP tree on The Beat at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. The last photo we have displayed was taken in 2013.

Here is Gary’s post, which also highlighted a couple of Police related charities:

“COPS: Care of Police Survivors memorial service on Sunday 28th July a very emotional and wet day held at the National Memorial Arboretum in Cannock, Staffordshire: Where at the BTP plaque I bumped into Mo Stanford also paying his respects. Photo opportunity. I was there Supporting the charity with a motorcycle group named The Blue Knights, a charity based group, made up of serving and retired police officers.”

Both Gary Wildman and Maurice ‘Mo’ Stanford are BTPHG members.

See also:

UK Police Memorial post

The Blue Knights and COPS websites

The Railway Dogs Benevolent Fund

The Railway Dogs Benevolent Fund logo

The Railway Dogs Benevolent Fund was launched recently and we have now added their website to our links page.

“For over 100 years, police dogs have served alongside officers to protect the public. Years spent chasing criminals, detecting drugs and searching for explosive devices can lead to these brave animals experiencing costly medical conditions in retirement.

The Railway Dogs Benevolent Fund was established to support dogs who have completed their service with British Transport Police (BTP).

The Fund provides grants towards the cost of their care, including ongoing medical treatment, so these loyal and hardworking animals can enjoy a long and happy retirement.”

You can also follow them on Twitter at @RailwayDogsFund



Remembering those lost on 7/7

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan (far right) attended the ceremony with senior members of London’s Emergency Services, including BTP Chief Constable Paul Crowther (3rd from left)


Today we remember the 52 innocent people killed and 700 injured by a terrorist attack on London’s transport network on 7th July 2005.

Wreaths were laid today at a ceremony in Hyde Park at the 7 July Memorial.

In a speech, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan paid tribute to those that died as well as those who helped the injured.

The mayor praised Londoners’ resilience while paying tribute to those that died.

“We will never forget those innocent victims, and as we grieve for them we also pay tribute to the heroic efforts of the emergency services and first responders who selflessly ran towards danger to help others,” he said. “Londoners showed resilience and unity in the face of huge adversity in 2005, and sadly our city has faced difficult times since then. But, standing together, we uphold the values that make this the best city in the world, united in defiance against terrorism.”

Among those joining him at the service were British Transport Police Chief Constable Paul Crowther, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, her City of London counterpart Ian Dyson, Commissioner of the London Fire Brigade Danielle Cotton, and London Ambulance Service Chief Executive Garrett Emmerson.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan at the ceremony.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan at the ceremony.


7 July Memorial

The 7 July Memorial was unveiled in Hyde Park on the fourth anniversary of the disaster, Tuesday 7 July 2009. Located in the south east corner of Hyde Park. The memorial comprises 52 stainless steel pillars, collectively representing each of the 52 victims, grouped together in four inter-linking clusters reflecting the four locations of the incidents. Constructed from solid-cast, long-lasting stainless steel, each pillar measures 3.5 metres high and is unique, with individual characteristic finishes brought about by the casting process.

Twitter: @Mayor of London
BBC News
7 July Memorial photo: By Hahnchen at Wikimedia Commons  – Own work.


Embed from Getty Images


Police Dog Rufus (Retd)

PD Rufus

Deputy Chief Constable Adrian Hanstock today presented Police Dog Rufus with his certificate of service.

The DCC said “Sometimes there are simple but great moments in this job. What a pleasure to present a certificate of service to PD Rufus who retired from @BTPDogs in 2013 after 5 years service. PD Rufus was an exceptional narcotics & substance detection dog. Thanks for your service.”


(Story via Twitter @BTPDeputy)

Also see the Police Dogs page, and the Police Dogs Photo Gallery.

New History Writers

Ian Oliver (centre), with wife Karen and Viv Head.

Ian Oliver has been appointed a BTP History Writer, for his continued hard work on the Police Service Records Project since it’s inception.

His citation reads: “History Group and long-term Committee Member, Ian spent most of his service at Southampton Docks and has a wealth of information on policing the port. In addition, whilst on the committee, Ian managed a project recording, verification and storage of many hundreds of Police Service Records. As a result we have a significant archive to add to our collections.”

Ian was presented with his certificate by BTPHG Chairman Viv Head, in the presence of Mrs Oliver, at the BTPHG AGM in Birmingham.



John Higgins, with Viv Head.

In an earlier presentation, John Higgins was also made a BTP History Writer. A member of BTPHG, John spent many years serving at Hull Docks until promotion came his way which took him on to Heysham and York. He is man very much aware of history and has put together a veritable catalogue of information, photographs and stories relating to the places he served. Two lever arch files full and more.


More Display Cabinets

Further to our earlier report that the BTPHG have a Display Cabinet in the foyer of Force Headquarters, we are now pleased to report that two more cabinets have been installed.

One at the Central London Police station:

Central London Police Station

and one at Ivason House:

Ivason House

and our original cabinet at FHQ now has an electricity supply for lighting, which considerably improves the look of the display.

Force Headquarters

Thanks as always to John Owen, Ed Thompson and Viv Head for putting this project together. And to the BTP for providing the cabinets and support for making it possible.