Police box is a talking point

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Colin Drury’s Diary article, Box full of memories (July 19), will have brought many recollections to local people, especially police officers who served in Sheffield City Police during the 50s, 60s and 70s.

Colin Drury’s Diary article, Box full of memories (July 19), will have brought many recollections to local people, especially police officers who served in Sheffield City Police during the 50s, 60s and 70s.

Police boxes similar to the one featured were scattered about the community and were the front line of street policing until gradually being withdrawn as policing methods changed. It is hard to believe that a four-foot square wooden box in the middle of densely populated communities equipped only with a stool, desk and phone was where arrested people were taken until the Black Maria came to ferry them to the police station.

Once in the box, police were generally safe from interference. Could it be like that now?

Police boxes began to be demolished in the early 80s, around the time Dr Who became popular. Because of all the interest, questions and requests to look inside by adults and children (hoping it would be like a Dr Who set) I had a steel information plaque put on ‘Town Hall Box’ to help remind future generations of the importance that iconic piece of architecture played in policing the city for many decades.

I’m pleased it’s still an ‘important’ city centre talking point.

Bill Ward (PC 531, retired)

Virgin helper

Sheffield should have its own airport, for the sake of business. How about contacting Sir Richard Branson who, I’m sure, would be happy to step in and help, given the opportunity.

JT, Sheffield