This book traces the history of the British Transport Police, the National Police Force responsible for policing the railways of England, Scotland and Wales. The roots of the Force go back almost 200 years, starting with the development of the railways during the Nineteenth Century. Hundreds of railway companies were founded and although mergers and amalgamations took place, by the end of the century, well over 100 railway companies were operating, most of which employed railway policemen. The first railway policemen were recruited to work on the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 1826. Other railway companies quickly followed and by the 1850s, railway policemen with their smart uniforms and top hats were a common sight on Britain’s railways. During the Twentieth Century, railway companies continued to merge before being nationalized in 1948. The following year, the British Transport Commission (BTC) was created to oversee not only the newly nationalized railway network, but also the nation’s docks, shipping, inland waterways, road transport, road haulage and other companies. Also in 1949, the British Transport Commission Police (BTC Police) was created to take over the policing of these newly nationalized institutions. All the former railway, dock and canal police forces were then absorbed into the new BTC Police Force. The BTC was abolished in 1962, having incurred serious financial losses. The BTC Police was renamed the British Transport Police in 1963 and has continued to operate ever since. It no longer polices the docks, harbors and canals for reasons outlined in this book.
The aim of the Act is to strengthen powers to counter the increased international terrorist threat in the UK, in the light of the September 11th terrorist attacks in the US. The Act covers issues including: terrorist property, freezing orders, disclosure of information, immigration and asylum, race and religion, the control of toxins, nuclear security, aviation security, police powers, and the retention of communications data. Key measures include new powers to detain those suspected of being terrorists. Changes are also proposed to speed up the asylum process, where the Secretary of State considers the removal of a suspected terrorist would be conducive to the public good. These decisions will be subject to regular independent review by the Special Immigration Appeals Commission, but the decisions of this body will no longer be subject to judicial review
This Review has established that the police service is currently ill-equipped to respond to possible and probable changes in increasingly specialised crime trends, political accountability, financial resources and the demographics of its workforce. This report covers reforms that may be introduced in the longer term. An earlier report on reforms that could be introduced in the short term published in March 2011 (Cm. 8024, ISBN 9780101802420) and made recommendations for savings of £1.1 billion over 3 years, most of which are being implemented following a determination of the Police Arbitration Panel. This report makes recommendations which could realise gross savings of £1.9 billion with £1.2 billion reinvested in policing. The 121 recommendations cover: employment framework, entry route and promotion; health, fitness and managing the workforce; basic pay, contribution-related pay and role-based pay; negotiating machinery. Each chapter contains a recommended phased process for introduction. The recommendations will provide the police service with the ability to attract and retain high calibre candidates with different skills and experiences, to maintain operational resilience by maximising the deployment of fit and healthy officers, and to manage office numbers according to need and in the public interest. Entry into the police service and advancement within would be according to the sole criterion of merit. The recommendations for reform of the pay review apparatus will have a profound effect, establishing a well-resourced professional pay review body ensuring that officers' pay is determined on sound evidence.
The book is about the railway police and most readers probably do not realise that it is the oldest police force in the United Kingdom and it can be traced back in history to 1826. I am no doubt that some historians of the Metropolitan Police will disagree. The book will follow the railway police through its history up until the present day and it will give you a flavour of what they are all about and of course what work they get involved in. I think some of you will be very surprised at what they actually do. I have written this book because I feel that they do not get the credit they deserve and are overlooked somewhat and I hope that after you have read this book you will agree with me that we do need the railway police as much as we need any other police.
Author: Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: Transport Committee
Publisher: The Stationery Office
Category: Business & Economics
Last year over 35,000 journeys were delayed or cancelled due cable theft which also cost Network Rail more than £16m. Cable theft from the rail network is part of an increase in metal theft across the country made easy by the way in which stolen metal can be sold to scrap metal dealers. We need urgent reform to improve the audit trail generated by the scrap metal industry so that criminals selling stolen metal into the trade can be identified much more easily. The Committee calls for additional powers for the police to help them in their efforts to combat metal theft. The Government should introduce a new offence of aggravated trespass on the railway to help deter cable thieves. The British Transport Police should be given new powers so that officers can enter both registered and unregistered scrap metal sites along with additional resources to carry out their enforcement work". The Committee also recommends: i) The Scrap Metal Dealers Act 1964 should be reformed so that individuals selling metal have to provide proof of their identity before a transaction can take place; ii) the Government should test the use of cashless trading in the scrap metal industry; iii) there should be greater clarity around compensation arrangements so that train operators cannot profit from disruption caused by cable theft; iv) Network Rail should develop a costed programme of measures to make cable more difficult to steal and v) the Department for Transport should update the Committee on work being undertaken to help passengers stranded on trains near stations to complete their journey