Promotional Leaflet


A new promotional flyer for the History Group has been published.

It is available as a glossy printed tri-fold leaflet or as a PDF download.

For more information go to the Leaflet page.

New Year Honours 2018

Superintendent Matthew Wratten, who led the operation to drive down theft on the London Underground and improve the service to victims has been recognised on the New Year Honours List.

He has been awarded the Queen’s Police Medal (QPM) for Services to Policing.

Supt Wratten joined BTP as a Constable from Kent Police in 1999 and is currently based at Central London Police Station within the Justice Department.

From 2010 to 2013, BTP saw a rise in thefts on the London Underground. Working with Transport for London, Supt Wratten developed initiatives to drive down those numbers, culminating in a 17% reduction in theft in the first year alone. That equated to nearly 3,000 fewer victims.

He has also made effective changes within the Justice Department to enrich the service for victims of crime, and chairs the Force’s Independent Scrutiny Panel to ensure out of court disposals are used appropriately and proportionately.

Chief Constable Paul Crowther said: “Superintendent Wratten personifies all the qualities that make a good officer, in that he constantly drives through changes and improvements to make sure we’re doing the best we can for victims. His work in the Justice Department and commitment to ensuring the victims of crime are properly supported is particularly commendable and I’m proud to call him a member of the BTP team.”


Source: BTP

See: Honours, Decorations and Medals table.

Merry Christmas

A very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at the BTPHG 🎄

Joining Fee increase

The Committee have agreed to increase the one-off joining fee for membership of the BTPHG from £12 to £15. This increase will take effect from Monday 1st January 2018.

So, if you’ve been meaning to join, but just haven’t got around to it, why not join now and beat the increase!

As well as contributing to help save the history of the BTP and its constituent forces, members get a monthly digital copy of our newsletter – History Lines – and a physical softback copy of our Year Book every year. Plus an invite to our AGM in Birmingham to meet up with fellow members to chat historically, topically or just plain sociably.

Details of how to join are on our membership page.


Railway Police Dogs (1951)

Steve Beamon recently discovered this gem from British Pathé, which had not come to our notice before.

Showing a BTC Dog Handler on patrol in Kings Cross Goods Yard, with a staged chase and capture of a ‘thief’.

Video from the British Pathé YouTube Channel.

100 Years of Women in Policing

On Thursday the 9th November 2017, BTP held an event celebrating 100 Years of Women in Policing on the Railways.

The History Group had been involved from the early planning stages and were there to assist with a display.

We have a report and photo gallery here: 100 Years of Women in Policing

Political Leaders Unite on stage to Honour The Emergency Services


The leaders of the Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrats parties united to honour three heroic police officers at the Pride of Britain awards.

Prime Minister Theresa May, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and the Liberal Democrats Sir Vince Cable put their political differences behind them on 30 October 2017 to pay tribute to officers who responded to terrorist attacks which took place in London earlier this year.

Taking to the stage at Grosvenor House, the politicians each expressed their gratitude to those who serve to keep the streets of Britain safe – as police officers Wayne Marques, Charlie Guenigault and Keith Palmer were honoured with the Outstanding Bravery awards.

PC Keith Palmer gave his life, aged 48, on 22 March 2017 while guarding the Palace of Westminster when terrorist Khalid Masood attacked, armed with two knives. Unarmed Keith valiantly fought off the terrorist, preventing him from entering Parliament, but sadly suffered a fatal knife wound before a fellow officer shot Masood dead.

Presenting the award to Keith’s sisters, Angela and Michelle, the Prime Minister praised the late Police Constable for his unwavering bravery.
“Keith Palmer devoted his life to the service of his country, and as he stood in defence of Parliament, facing down and tackling that evil terrorist, unarmed, he stood for Britain, he gave his life for Britain, he was, quite simply, the pride of Britain,” Prime Minister May said. “I think it is entirely fitting that tonight this award is being given for the first time ever posthumously, in memory of PC Keith Palmer,” she added.

Officers Wayne Marques and Charlie Guenigault were also awarded for their roles in tackling a terrorist attack on 3 June 2017 in which Khuram Shazad Butt, Rachid Redouane and Youssef Zaghba killed eight and injured 48 others in an attack in London Bridge.

“Police Constable Wayne Marques of British Transport Police probably wasn’t expecting anything like this when he went on duty that night,” Jeremy Corbyn said. “He saw danger, he saw people at risk of losing their lives and he potentially laid down his own life so that others might live,” the Labour leader continued. “On behalf of everybody, thank you to him, and thank you to all of our emergency services who keep us safe 365 days of the year. Thank you very much,” he said.

Sir Vince Cable added: “Whatever differences we have politically, I think we are completely and totally united in wanting to honour the real heroes that our country produces and we have them here tonight.”

by Seamus Duff


Sources –
Text: The Daily Mirror (07/11/2017)
Video: ITV / YouTube

London, Chatham and Dover Railway Police

A fascinating insight into the way our forebears were engaged has come from the a new article on The Dover Historian website.

The article, by Lorraine Sencicle, is one in a series documenting how the English ‘packet’ service out of Dover, that is ships carrying official messages and mail, evolved over the centuries. This article concentrates on the London, Chatham and Dover Railway Company’s venture between 1860 and 1874. It is entitled Packet Service V LCDR & the Route to Dover’s Prosperity.

Of particular interest to the BTPHG is the use of the railway company’s police on the ships, and the fight against the rise in crime affecting their passengers. It also documents a joint operation between the LCDR police, the South Eastern Railway Police, Dover Borough Police and the Metropolitan Police.

The Dover Historian website is a treasure trove for the history enthusiast, there is information on Dover, the port and the railways that served it.


💡 Webmaster’s Tip:
The article is a long one, so although it is worth reading in full, you can use your browser to do a word search for ‘police’ to get to the most relevant parts.

The Great Storm, 1987

The Great Storm

In the week when we had very severe weather in the British Isles, by some bizarre co-incidence it was also the 30th anniversary of another climactic weather event in southern England.
Rob Ekins, a PC at BTP Brighton at the time, remembered the part he and his colleagues played that night in an article for History Lines: The GREAT STORM, 1987

One of many articles we hold in the HistoryBank section of our website.

UPDATE – November 2017: To commemorate the 30th anniversary Rob was interviewed by the Eastbourne Herald newspaper:
Eastbourne Police Officer Recalls Storm

New BTP related book

Nineteenth Century Railway Crime and Policing

A new addition to the BTPHG virtual Bookshelf has been made.

BTPHG member and BTP History Writer, Malcolm Clegg, who has researched and written several articles for our newsletter History Lines has recently published a history of railway crime and policing in the nineteenth century.

From the publisher’s website: ‘A fascinating historical insight into the role played by the early railway policemen and the types of crime which they encountered. Their endeavour to maintain law and order whilst at the same time performing operational duties to keep the railways running.’