25 March 2019
Livery Society AGM - Guest speaker Commissioner Ian Dyson – head of the City of London Police
As ever, the ‘business’ was dealt with in jig time…., and we made time for our guest speaker – Commissioner Ian Dyson, who is head of the City of London Police.
Mr Dyson detailed why the City of London Police is independent of the Met; basically, when Robert Peel tried to create the Police in 1828, the Bill wasn’t passed, as the City didn’t want to be part of it – as it had its own Beadles, Night watchmen etc…. – so, the Met was established a year later, and, eventually 10 Years after that, in 1839, the City of London Police was established.
There were originally 6 police stations; there are now only 3 - Snowhill, Bishopsgate and Wood St – but that might change soon ….
In the West Wing of the Guildhall Gallery is the City of London Police Museum – which includes details of e.g. the fact that they are undefeated Olympic champions …. – in Tug of War …., which has not featured in the Olympics since 1920!
The Bakers Truncheon is to be found there too – the oldest truncheon in the collection.!
In the modern world, the City of London Police has an obvious role to play in policing the streets; c 450k commuters come to work in the City every day. And the nights are longer than they were a generation ago - with pubs/ bars open late and the establishment of clubs like e.g. the Ned, which operate all weekend too.
Counterterrorism and Cyber Fraud are the less obvious roles that the City of London police have. My Dyson detailed Project Servator, which the City Police developed in order to counter terrorism – and has since been rolled out across 16 Police Forces, and there is interest internationally too. https://www.cityoflondon.police.uk/community-policing/project-servator/Pages/Project-Servator.aspx
These days, 70% of fraud happen on-line. Since 2008, the City of London Police has led the country in the fight against cyber fraud. It has developed Action Fraud which is a reporting system that is linked to Intelligence systems around the world via the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau.
Unsurprisingly, there were plenty of questions from the audience – covering delicate subjects, including Diversity, Brexit and Cannabis…..
Following Mr Dyson’s fascinating talk – for which he had no notes whatsoever -, we retired for a glass of fizz and then for supper.
A most enjoyable evening – and public thanks once again to Mr Dyson for being such a wonderful guest.
Max Elvidge, Chairman of the Livery Society