The City Of London Police Museum: What's All This Then?

By M@ Last edited 86 months ago

Last Updated 19 May 2017

The City Of London Police Museum: What's All This Then?

One of our favourite pub quiz questions goes like this: at which sport are the City of London Police the reigning Olympic champions?

You can find the answer in the City of London Police Museum, where the team's gold medal (from 1920) is on prominent display.

The City of London Police force's Olympic gold medal. But what event?

The City of London, for those who don't know, has its own police force. It operates independently of the Metropolitan Police. This museum, nestled in a corner of Guildhall Library, tells the story of this constabulary from its inception in 1839 through to modern times.

It's a cracking, thought-provoking little museum, which packs in objects from such diverse crimes as the Jack the Ripper murders (one of which took place in the City) and the IRA attacks of the late 20th century. We also learn about the role of the police in the two world wars and ongoing challenges such as counter-terrorism and combating financial crime.

Here are a few highlights:

A memorial plaque to three police officers killed by anarchists in Houndsditch in 1910 — one of the worst attacks on the police in British history.
Coat hooks from a City of London police station. The hooks are jokingly positioned to mock the Metropolitan Police, whose officers had a smaller minimum height than those of the City police (5 foot 7 versus 5 foot 9).
A City of London police helmet, smashed in by an IRA bomb at the Old Bailey. The officer survived.
A sign recovered from the scene of the 1975 Moorgate underground crash — one of the worst disasters in the City's modern history.

The final section offers a display of officers' uniforms over the decades, and a chance to try on various helmets.

The whole museum can be comfortably viewed in 30-45 minutes. Why not spend your luncheon with a truncheon?

City of London Police Museum is located within Guildhall Library on Aldermanbury. Open every day except Sunday. Free entry.