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Dave - I unquestiongly accept your explanation for this photo - I don't know if Donald Rumbelow is still active in collecting ?

I am sure he found this mistake embarrasing - however, they do happen. I will correct the notes under the photo. I will

say that you have good eyesight - much better than mine................... Mervyn

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Dave - I unquestiongly accept your explanation for this photo - I don't know if Donald Rumbelow is still active in collecting ?

I am sure he found this mistake embarrasing - however, they do happen. I will correct the notes under the photo. I will

say that you have good eyesight - much better than mine................... Mervyn

Mervyn,

Although I have his "I spy Blue" book, its many years since I glanced at it, but did so several minutes ago. He credits both photos as being from "The Times". I may have noticed the error previously but have to admit that I've never drawn his attention to it. Indeed I've never had any contact with him. He's certainly not (to my knowledge) ever been a member of PICA or similar. I saw the photo for the first time many years ago in a small booklet published in the 1940's by the Chief Constable of Liverpool in which he set out a brief history of policing in Liverpool. I suspect that the original copyright for it rests with Liverpool City Police.

Dave.

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Dave - when my book came out 30 years ago, I found that I had made one silly error. I asked where a

Special's band had originated and said perhaps Middlesex - I had mean't to put the correct, Metropolitan.

I had over 20 people pointing out I had made a mistake with this - needless to say it was too late to do

anything. I had my Sec. write and Congratulate them for 'spotting' the deliberate mistake. I gave prizes to the

first few. Best wishes Mervyn

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 8 months later...

Hey chaps, first I'd like to say this project is not dead, just that I have come up against a bit of a brick wall finding out more information, particularly regarding specific dates, I hope re-opening this thread might turn up some more information. The main issue I am having is with the various grades of Inspector's uniform, circa 1870-1886. 

Below are two illustrations I've done to show the issues I'm having, the top example is based on information in the 'Behind the Blue Lamp' series and the famous Vanity Fair caricature of Chief Inspector Ebenezer Denning with an accompanying painting of the Lobby of the House of Commons from 1886.

Both these sources show Chief Inspectors wearing a uniform as shown on the right, the helmet plate is known to be correct as is the silver embroidery on the tunic, an extant example in a photograph posted elsewhere on this forum seems to have blackened brass buttons but period photos seem to show bright metal buttons (transitional?). In both sources the rosette atop the helmet appears to be bright not blackened though I would be happy to be corrected on this if it is wrong.

The Inspectors uniform on the left has a question mark hanging over it, the helmet plate is known to be correct, should the rosette atop the helmet be bright not blackened? Is the lack of the silver embroidery to the cuffs correct as a way of identifying the two ranks?

Finally were these uniforms the predecessors of the examples shown in the second image or worn as every day uniform or did they exist concurrently but as a dress uniform?
Untitled-1.thumb.png.00eb6062dc22ca7a664

The second illustration, below, shows two uniforms known to be largely correct, the tunics at least, the helmet details have the same question marks as raised above. The questions I have are, when was this sort of tunic introduced (possibly around 1886, the famous group photograph of H Division from around this time, posted earlier in this thread by Zeb seems to show Inspectors wearing this plainer uniform but with kepis, hoping to get a clearer version of the photo at some point.) And when did Chief Inspectors receive the crown on the collar to denote their rank? As I understand it Sub-Divisional Inspectors were identified by a star on the collar from the introduction of the rank in 1887 so it is possible the crown also came into use at this time?
Untitled-2.thumb.png.767f86f4183772209d8

Any help much appreciated, information has otherwise dried up and I am alas too far North to head to the Metropolitan Police Heritage Centre for the foreseeable future.

Edited by SimonLMoore
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Happy to say I've managed to find an answer to part of my question, it seems the silver braided uniform was in use until 1887 as a dress uniform when the undress tunic replaced it for use as the dress uniform too. Still looking for details on the helmets and whether both Inspectors and Chief Inspectors wore the silver leaf embroidery on the cuffs.

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