Gallantry Roll of Honour Plaque

PC Wayne Marques and PC Leon McLeod

Today (05/12/2018) at BTP Force Headquarters, the Gallantry Roll of Honour plaque was unveiled with two additional names inscribed. PC Wayne Marques and PC Leon McLeod had their names added following their heroic actions during the London Bridge terrorist attack.

In attendance were Rail Minister Andrew Jones and HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary Sir Tom Windsor.

CC Paul Crowther, Sir Tom Windsor, PC Leon McLeod, PC Wayne Marques and Andrew Jones.

See also: Officers receive their medals


Sources: Twitter / @BTPolFed and @BTP

Facebook / BTP Federation



Display Cabinet

BTPHG Display Cabinet

As mentioned in an earlier post, the History Group now has a permanent display in the reception area of Force HQ. It will house artefacts, photos and documents from our archives and will be a showcase of the Group’s work in preserving BTP’s history. The displays will be refreshed periodically with different memorabilia.

We have also been promised other locations for similar displays. So it’s all very positive news for the Group.

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

In Remembrance 1914 - 1918

During the last four years the BTP History Group have been marking the Centenary of the Great War and remembering those who were killed and injured during the conflict. In particular, our thoughts were with those members of the constituent police forces that now make up the British Transport Police.

Our monthly newsletter – History Lines, has published details of the officers who died in each corresponding month one hundred years before. And these details have also been shown on our Facebook page. Details are also on our WWI Roll of Honour.

As we approach Remembrance Day 2018, marking the war’s end, we publish five photographs that have been chosen to mark the occasion for presentation in our display cabinet at the BTP Headquarters.

Thanks to Viv Head for preparing these images and captions.

Also see Letter to an Unknown Soldier 

First police dog on scene of Manchester Arena attack to be honoured

PD Mojo with his medal (Image: Julian Brown / PDSA)

The British Transport Police Dog who was first on the scene following the devastating terror attack on Manchester Arena, is to be honoured by leading vet charity PDSA.
Police Dog (PD) Mojo will receive the PDSA Order of Merit at a ceremony later this month, for his devotion to duty under the most horrendous circumstances, on 22 May 2017.

Mojo’s former handler and now owner, PC Phil Healy, was joined by PDSA Director of Fundraising, Nigel Spencer, to announce his forthcoming award. Discussing Mojo’s award, Nigel said: ‘Mojo’s actions on that fateful night enabled the emergency services to carry out their vital work, by helping to search and clear the area of potential secondary devices. Mojo worked tirelessly under conditions he’d never experienced before. For that devotion to duty and service to society, PDSA is honoured to recognise him.”

Source: PDSA

Earlier this year PC Healey and PD Mojo were awarded the Police Dog Team Operational or Humanitarian Action of the Year Award.

Also see our Police Dogs page.


Officers recieve their medals

Pc’s McLeod and Marques after receiving their medals

PC Wayne Marques and PC Leon McLeod, together with other award recipients from the London Bridge terrorist attack, received their medals today (11th October 2018).

Constable Leon McLeod, left, received the Queen’s Gallantry Medal, while PCs Charles Guenigault and Wayne Marques were awarded the George Medal. © Press Association

(More details will follow)


Retired Officer celebrates 100 years

Sylvester ‘Jock’ Winters at FHQ, with his wife and family, the Chief Constable and others.

report by John Owen

Sylvester Walter ‘Jock’ Winters celebrates his 100th birthday today (10th October 2018). Jock served with BTCP & BTP from 1951 until 1975 at Euston, St Pancras & Camden. He and his family were invited to FHQ to meet with the Chief Constable yesterday.

Course 48 Tadworth 1951

The History Group had managed to locate a photograph of his initial training course in 1951 of which a framed copy was presented to him. It was a great occasion and Ed Thompson and I were delighted to have been invited along to represent the History Group. ‘Jock’ was able to meet a couple of firearms officers and dog handler pictured here. Jock’s son, Andy (also pictured) is a serving BTP officer.

Illustrated Address for Elijah Copping

Illustrated Address

Earlier this year the History Group purchased the Illustrated Address presented to Detective Superintendent Elijah Copping by his colleagues, on his retirement from the London and North Western Railway Company in 1904. Superintendent Copping had a distinguished career and was involved in several high-profile cases.

Lookout for a forthcoming HistoryBank article.

Also see Elijah Copping in this group photograph from the Railway Police Superintendents’ Annual Conference at Windsor in 1897.

BTP officers honoured for heroic actions during London Bridge terrorist attack


PC’s Leon McLeod and Wayne Marques

Two BTP officers have been recognised by the Queen for their heroic actions during the London Bridge attack last year, it has been announced today in the Civilian Gallantry List: 2018.

PC Leon McLeod has been awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal, and PC Wayne Marques the George Medal.

On 3 June 2017, three terrorists carried out an attack on members of the public at London Bridge, resulting in eight people being killed. PC Wayne Marques was seriously injured as he ran towards the attackers and confronted them, armed only with his baton. His colleague, PC Leon McLeod, was with PC Marques that night. He ran after the attackers and gave vital first aid to injured people, helping to carry people to safety despite the danger to himself.

Chief Constable Paul Crowther, said: “I was delighted to hear the news that PC Marques and PC McLeod are to be honoured for their incredible actions during those terrible events in June last year. It really signifies the regard in which we all hold them for their actions that night. Last year was a year that was incredibly difficult for many BTP officers and staff up and down the country and I’m incredibly grateful for all they did during those difficult times. While today is a day of acknowledgment and celebration for Wayne and Leon, of course, our thoughts remain with those who lost their lives or were injured in all of those terrible incidents. But very well done to Wayne and Leon.”

PC Wayne Marques, said: “It is unbelievable to be awarded with the George Medal, I am truly speechless. When I think back to the night of the attack, I was just doing my job and trying to save lives – I never expected to be honoured in this way. I remember the events of that night vividly, the evil that was done but also the courage and bravery of the public and my colleagues. I am here today because of my friends who helped me, I’d cannot thank them enough.”

PC Leon McLeod, said: “I am overwhelmed to receive this honour – I was in complete shock when I opened the letter. As police officers, you never know what to expect on your shift. When me and Wayne heard the screams at London Bridge, our first instinct was to run and help. We never thought we were being brave, all we wanted to do is help as many people as possible. It feels surreal and bittersweet to be honoured following the horror of this attack. So many people acted with courage, I was just one piece in London’s response to this atrocity.”

From left, PC Leon McLeod, PC Wayne Marques and PC Charles Guenigault were recognised for their response to the attack.

PC McLeod and PC Marques have been honoured alongside PC Charlie Guenigault from the Metropolitan Police Service, who was also injured during the London Bridge terrorist attack. PC  Guenigault was off-duty at the time but rushed to help PC Marques when he saw what was happening and was stabbed repeatedly. He praised the efforts of Ellen Gauntlett and Justin Jones, who helped him and took him to hospital, and have been recognised with the Queen’s Commendation for Bravery. “I can’t thank them enough for what they did,” he said.


(See the full Citations here)

See the Honours, Decorations & Medals page.



BTP website

BBC News

Civilian Gallantry List: 2018


Retired BTP officer receives the Legion d'honneur

William Tavendale at the Balhousie Castle ceremony.

Last Wednesday (13/06/2018), Retired Sergeant William Tavendale received the Legion d’honneur from the French Consul General.
See the HistoryBank article – Retired BTP officer receives the Legion d’honneur – for details.

In 2014, French President Francois Hollande announced during the 70th anniversary commemoration of the Normandy landings that France would give its highest honour to all surviving veterans who fought for the liberation of France during the Second World War.

Also see our post on Geoffrey Lawrence, who received the honour in February 2016.

Queen's Birthday Honours

The History Group are very pleased to announce that Her Majesty the Queen has bestowed honours on two of our members:

  • BENJAMIN CLIFFORD, Special Chief Officer, British Transport Police receives a BEM for services to policing.
  • JIM RENTELL, formerly Constable and Football Intelligence officer of Birmingham receives the QPM.

We send our hearty congratulations two both members on their well-deserved honours.


Jim Rentell

Jim Rentell

A British Transport Police officer who served with the force for more than 40 years said it was “wonderful” to have been awarded the QPM (Queen’s Police Medal) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours. Jim who joined BTP as a cadet in July 1973, became a constable at New Street – a job he said he loved. From there, he was posted to Birmingham International Airport and, in 1982, joined the Mobile Support Unit. They were a public order that were often used to police travelling football supporters – and it was football which would come to dominate Jim’s working life.

In 1987, he was part of Operation Red Card, a West Midlands-led operation to infiltrate and stop a Birmingham City hooligan group. The operation led to 67 arrests. Other jobs included being seconded to West Midlands Police for Euro ‘96, the National Football Unit for France ’98, and in 2001, Jim became the Football Intelligence Officer for Wales and Western, and later the Midlands division. He was well known within the football and policing community over the years, as well as getting to attend some of the biggest championships of the last few decades. His last was the Champions League Final in Cardiff last year.

Jim said: “I am very honoured that BTP thought so highly of me over my 44 years of service and put my name forward for this honour. I think what I’d really like to say is thank you for the support of my family – especially my wife Mary, who I have been married to for nearly 40 years – and my two sons Patrick and Andrew, and their other halves. They’ve had to put up with my love for BTP and I know they will be very proud of me getting the QPM. Which is just wonderful.”

Chief Constable Paul Crowther said: “Jim was a well-known and respected officer around the force, and I’m delighted he is being honoured with a QPM. His dedication over 44 years of service was exemplary and included some of the biggest operations the force has ever taken part in – most recently the Champions League Final last year. I know he has been sorely missed since his retirement. This award is just recognition of his contribution to policing the railway and keeping the public safe and I want to once again thank Jim for everything he did for BTP.”


Ben Clifford

Ben Clifford

British Transport Police’s most senior Special Constable has also been awarded an honour in The Queen’s Birthday 2018 Honours List.

Ben Clifford, who is the Chief Officer of BTP Special Constabulary, has received a BEM (British Empire Medal) for services to policing. Ben joined BTP’s special constabulary back in January 2006, being posted to London Victoria and then Croydon. He quickly progressed through the ranks becoming Special Chief Inspector for the London South Area. In April 2014 he temporarily became the Chief Officer for the force’s specials and was appointed substantively to the post in November 2014. As Chief Officer, he leads the force’s 340 special constables nationwide. Like all special constables, Ben’s contribution to BTP is voluntary and is on top of his full-time employment as an academic geographer lecturing in City Planning at University College London. Ben regularly takes his volunteering work up and down the nation, visiting teams across England, Scotland and Wales. BTP Specials play a significant role in the everyday policing of Britain’s railways. From patrolling stations, tram networks and the London Underground, they’ve also contributed to major events such as Notting Hill Carnival, Champions League Final in Cardiff and New Year’s Eve celebrations. Special Constables have also proved invaluable during the heightened threat level in 2017 following the devastating terrorist attacks in Manchester and London.

Chief Officer Ben Clifford said: “It is a huge privilege to receive this honour and it came as a total shock! Since day one at the Special Constabulary, I have enjoyed every second. It hasn’t come without it’s challenges and juggling this role with my full-time employment can be tricky. “However, the work we do as police officers can be extremely rewarding. We see the best and worst in people, helping those in crisis through to arresting criminals, no shift is ever the same. “The last couple of years have been particularly rewarding for me, seeing a growth so that BTP’s specials have been volunteering over 100,000 hours to policing per year. Every day our Specials are out on the network and are contributing hugely to keeping the travelling public safe – I am proud to be a part of this incredible team. “I love what I do, and I definitely see myself volunteering as a special constable for a few more years yet.”

Chief Constable Paul Crowther said: “Ben’s contribution to BTP and policing of the railways has been outstanding. Ben has given over 11 years’ service to BTP’s Special Constabulary – firstly as a Special Constable and since 2014 as BTP’s Special Chief Officer providing inspirational leadership to our Specials, who add extraordinary value to our Force. “In the last 12 months alone, Ben volunteered more than 700 hours to policing, and his wider team of specials have contributed more than 100,000 hours policing the railway and serving the travelling public. “Ben’s commitment and focus has truly made a real difference. I am immensely proud of his work and the work of our Special Constabulary. This honour is well deserved.”


Source: BTP website

See the Honours, Decorations & Medals page.