Supporting the local community
News by Subject
Essex-&-Suffolk-Water With thanks to Essex & Suffolk Water for funding support of this website through the Abberton Reservoir Community Fund.


PAWS January – Barney’s Bobbies

Michael Benning talked about Barney's Bobbies

Michael Benning

PAWS January – Barney’s Bobbies

Relating the story of Barney’s Bobbies, Michael joined the police force in 1969 and was paid the princely sum of £17 per week. He spent the first 5 years of his career ‘on the beat’ and spent many nights rattling shop doors and was in trouble from sergeant Barney if he did not detect some sort of crime on his shift! The sergeant was very hot on discipline and correct uniform and his ‘Bobbies’ were some of the best on the force.

Michael soon had a new job on Cycle Patrol, which was great except that the bike was far too big. On telling his sergeant that he could not reach the pedals even if he could get on the bike, he was told to just wheel it around until he grew! There were no personal radios in those days so he had to phone in to the station every hour to get instructions using a Police Box (Tardis).

TV programmes such as Dickson of Dock Green and later The Bill were good representations of how the Police worked. Michael finished his career on the hijack team at Stansted Airport and ran many marathons in the Police team. He also gave us an insight into how things had changed in the Police Force over the years and of some of the amusing and sometimes dangerous incidents that he had been involved in.

Our next meeting is on the 23rd February when our speaker Stacey Belbin will tell us about “Lady Grace the boat.” Visitors are welcome at a cost of £5.00. Details of all our meetings and speakers can be found on the diary of the home page of the Winstred 100 website.

If you would like further information about P.A.W.S please ring either of the following committee members: Alice Holmes 01206 735510 or Jane Anderson 01206 735505.