Leighton Policing before the thin blue line
How times have changed. The crowd of officers in this picture were just part of a shift at Leighton Police Station which turned out to congratulate one of their civilian workers, Joan Lambert, on receiving her MBE back in 1988. Now, from October 1, the station, in Peel Court, Hockliffe Road, will be used as a base for just a handful of community officers, a move which has caused outrage in the town.
Until the 1970s Leighton-Linslade had two police stations to deal with a population of about 30,000 people. Besides Peel Court there was a second station in Wing Road, Linslade, which was made famous when the Great Train Robbers were housed in its cells.
The Linslade station, and its adjoining courthouse, were sold off in the 1980s after more than 100 years of service. They’re now flats.
Today we are facing a massive increase in housing growth that will push the population over 40,000 at a time when Beds Police is being forced to make drastic cutbacks following reduced government grants.
Joan’s partner, Norman Didwell, 92, who lives just a few doors from the Hockliffe Road station, said: “There are about 16 officers in the photo and that was just part of a shift. You also had six CID officers, cells, civilian staff and a court on the site. I think local people, and the local police themselves, are appalled at what has become of the station.”
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Weather for Leighton Buzzard
Friday 24 May 2013
Temperature: 3 C to 8 C
Wind Speed: 33 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 5 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North