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Period 1960-1990

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1960

Chief Superintendent Elizabeth Bather retired.

Women Police seconded to Uganda until 1963.

Women Police seconded to Sierra Leone until 1964

Women Police employed on Vellocette lightweight motor cycles in outlying areas on 4 subdivisions.

1960
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1961

Superintendent Winifred Barker WN 479 (the first who came through the ranks) promoted Chief Superintendent in charge of A.4. Branch.

Women are serving in C.1., Special Branch, Flying Squad, Regional Crime Squads, and on each Division.

Police Federation Act 1961 gave Women Police full representative and voting rights.

Women Police seconded to Nigeria.

Six WPC’s posted to new Patrol – given MGB Sports car Reg.no. 106FLY

They had a six-week postings rota to the four Area Traffic dealing with various motoring offences and particularly looking for girls hitch-hiking on lorries. (the M.1 motorway had also opened bringing more girls south).

Introduction of the National First Aid Competition

1961
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1962-63

Age limit to join reduced to 19 years.

Working Party Report on Met Women Police (Inc. Supt Shirley Becke) reveals their duties to be:

Patrolling - varied by district

Escorting women, children and young persons

Custody of women prisoners in hospital and stations

Taking fingerprints

Juvenile and Matrimonial court officers

Court Inspector at Croydon

Enquiries re missing females, young persons, etc

Observations on crime, brothels, betting, licensing etc

Police raids where children and women may be found

School crossings

Deporting women aliens

Divisional short hand writers

Statement takers in indecency cases

Execution warrants re deserters and absentees from Women's Services

Lecture outside organisations

CID and aids to CID

Central index of Prostitutes

Training school

Establishment:

  • 1 Chief Supt
  • 4 Superintendents and 1 in CID
  • 4 Chief Inspectors
  • 11 Inspectors and 3 in CID
  • 51 Sergeants and 11 in CID
  • 454 constables

7 and half hour’s patrol duty, 1 hour for refreshment.

1 women officer (minimum) on division on night duty.

1962-63
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1964

George Medal awarded to W.P.C. Margaret Cleland WN 1793 for courage in rescuing a known deranged man and his child from a roof.

1964
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1965

Chief Superintendent Barker WN 479 retired.

Superintendent Shirley Becke WN478 promoted Chief Superintendent in charge of A.4. Branch.

1965
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1967

First female Inspector takes up Bramshill Scholarship to Manchester University.

New style uniform designed by Norman Hartnell was introduced. Hat by Mme. Simone Mirman.

1967
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1968

50 years on from formation of Women Patrols – Establishment is-

Rank Women Uniform Women C.I.D.  
Chief Superintendent 1 -  
Superintendent 1st class 2 -  
Superintendent 2nd class 5 1  
Chief Inspector 5 1  
Inspector 25 6  
Sergeant 64 17  
Constable 478 66  
Temporary Det. Constable - 26  
Total 580 117 697

First black woman police officer - Sislin Fay Allen WN 2453.

1968
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1969

Chief Superintendent Shirley Becke WN 478 became the first woman Commander.

Establishment 629: Strength 515 uniform and 77 CID.

Juvenile Bureaux introduced staffing by both sexes.

Women’s team won the National Police Ten Pin Bowling competition at Wembley.

1969
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1970

January – First Women Officers appointed to Mounted Branch, began training at Imber Court.

They were posted to Great Scotland Yard stables in June

1970
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1971

February – first Sikh woman officer – Karpal Kaur Sandhu WN 2725 / 3058. Later murdered by her husband who was sentenced in March 1974.

First two women appointed as Drug dog handlers.

First woman officer employed as Crime Prevention Officer.

Women allowed to wear boots (at own expense)

1971
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1972

First four women officers appointed to Traffic Division.

Plans announced for Integration – Police Order 22nd September

New style 'Surrey' uniform introduced.

Sislin Fay Allen WN 2453, the first Caribbean officer resigns

1972
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1973

Integration and Equal opportunities established – Police Order 20th February

Separate establishments abolishment - A.4. disbanded.

Commander Shirley Becke WN 478 appointed to Inspectorate.

Inspector Sheila Ward takes charge of own Relief at West End Central.

1973
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1974

Equal pay.

Commander Daphne Skillern WN 792 appointed to take charge of C.O. Branch.

1974
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1975

Girl Cadets introduced.

First woman Officer to be appointed Collator.

Police Graduate Entry Scheme introduced.

1975
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1976

First Woman Chief Superintendent appointed to take charge of a subdivision.

First female Cadet to become Police Officer

The Metropolitan Women Police Association (MWPA) formed by Chief Superintendent Greta Drinkwater WN 949.

Women allow to wear uniform trousers on duty for first time.

1976
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1978

A First Aid team of women of the Metropolitan Police win the Grand Prior First Aid trophy a competition against leading teams from the commercial world.

New ‘mix & match' uniform designed by Mansfield Originals was introduced, with 'Butcher Boy' hat designed by Simone Mirman. Cravats replaced Bow ties.

Lord Edmund Davis Report into police pay.

1978
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1979

60th Anniversary reception and Reunion Dinner of women in Metropolitan Police, attended by HM Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.

Strength on 1st January 1979 – 1498 women officers. Met had 10% quota for female recruits.

5000th woman joined the service on 19th February - 60 years after the first group left training class.

New hat known as ‘Baker Boy’, ‘Butcher Boy’, ‘Smurf’ hat. Greatly disliked. (Reverted to 'Surrey' hat).

1979
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1980

First Hindu woman officer appointed

Women Officers issued with handcuffs in December.

1980
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1981

First female motorcyclist posted to Heathrow Airport.

1981
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1983

WPC Jane Arbuthnot WN 6021 killed with others by IRA bomb at Harrods

First female officer posted to Thames Division

Culottes introduced to women’s uniform.

1983
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1984

WPC Yvonne Fletcher WN 4257 killed whilst policing a demonstration outside the Libyan Embassy.

Female becomes Acting DAC, responsible of Equal Ops, Race and Gender

First woman to get HGV Class 1, she then drove the Recruiting truck.

Establishment of women officers: 2484 (2307 uniform and 174 CID)

1984
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1985

New style uniforms introduced, with reinforced Bowler hat.

1985
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1986

April - Women issued with shorter truncheons. To be worn with skirts or trousers provided with truncheon pockets. If wearing a skirt not incorporating a truncheon pocket, to be carried in their handbags.

MWPA celebrates 10th anniversary.

1986
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1987

Female recruit receives Baton of Honour for first time.

Women allowed to attend Level 2 Public Order training – aim to put women on the Divisional Support Units (DSU)

Grievance procedures introduced.

1987
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1988

Women no longer precluded from becoming authorised firearms officers. (AFO)

1988
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1989

22 women trained as AFO's (Fire Arms)

1989
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1990

Senior woman officer retires and is made a life peer. The first female career Met Police officer to be ennobled. Active in the Howard League

‘W’ removed from WPC (Woman Police Constable)

1990