ABOVE: SID VICIOUS WITH HIS GIRLFRIEND NANCY SPUNGEN
BELOW IS THE POLICE MUGSHOT OF SID VICIOUS AT THE TIME OF ONE OF HIS MANY ARRESTS , BACK IN 1979, IN NEW YORK , USA.
BELOW … IMAGE OF SID VICIOUS WEARING THESE BIKER BOOTS WHILST PRANCING ABOUT IN PARIS WHILST FILMING A TV DOCUMENTARY .
ABOVE AND BELOW …SID VICIOUS PERFORMING SOLO WEARING THESE LEATHER BOOTS ON WHAT WAS HIS LAST LIVE PERFORMANCE AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY , NEW YORK ON SEPTEMBER 29 1978 … LATER TO BE REPORTED IN THE NME DATED 14 OCTOBER 1978
SID VICIOUS PERFORMING SOLO WEARING THESE LEATHER BOOTS ON WHAT WAS HIS LAST LIVE PERFORMANCES AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY , NEW YORK ON SEPTEMBER 29 1978 … LATER TO BE REPORTED IN THE NME DATED 14 OCTOBER 1978
SID VICIOUS PERFORMING SOLO WEARING THESE LEATHER BOOTS ON WHAT WAS HIS LAST LIVE PERFORMANCES AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY , NEW YORK ON SEPTEMBER 29 1978 … LATER TO BE REPORTED IN THE NME DATED 14 OCTOBER 1978
NME CUTTING DATED 14 OCTOBER 1978 OF SID VICIOUS WEARING THESE BOOTS DURING HIS SOLO GIG AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY GIG … A GREAT RARE CLOSE-UP OF SID’S BOOTS AS WAS LAST WORN BY SID SHORTLY BEFORE HIS ARREST FOR THE MURDER OF HIS GIRLFRIEND NANCY SPUNGEN ON 12 OCTOBER 1978
PURCHASE RECEIPT FOR THE BOOTS … BOUGHT BY ANDY JONES FOR THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION AT FRASERS AUCTION HOUSE , LONDON, BACK IN 2000
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Above are several images of Sid Vicious most treasured leather biker boots , which he can also be seen wearing in this video of him prancing about in Paris , France . in his alleged suicide note ( many believe that this was actually written by his mother Anne Beverley ) he had requested that he be buried with his leather jacket and these leather biker boots … This was never the case as he was cremated and his ashes were secretly thrown over Nancy’s grave . His mother had subsequently kept his personal clothing last worn by him and later these boots were auctioned off in the year 2000 by Alan Parker through Frasers Auctions , London . Bought by Andy Jones of the Crime Through Time Collection and now on permanent display at Littledean Jail , Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, UK .
Original painting by Gloucestershire artist Paul Bridgman of Sid Vicious and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen on display in and amongst our Punk Rock Collection here at Littledean Jail.
ABOVE IS SID’S ( NOW WELL AGED ) BIKE CHAIN BRACELET ALONG WITH IMAGE OF HIM WEARING THIS . ALSO HERE ON DISPLAY AT THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION , LITTLEDEAN JAIL .
Sid Vicious, born John Simon Ritchie, later named John Beverley (10 May 1957 – 2 February 1979), was an English bass guitarist, drummer and vocalist, most famous as a member of the influential punk rock band the Sex Pistols, and notorious for his arrest for the murder of his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen.
Vicious joined the Sex Pistols in early 1977, to replace Glen Matlock, who had fallen out of favour with the rest of the group. Due to intravenous drug use, Vicious was hospitalized with hepatitis during the recording of the band’s only studio album Never Mind the Bollocks. Accordingly, his bass is only partially featured on one song from the album. Vicious would later appear as a lead vocalist, performing three cover songs, on the soundtrack to The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle, a largely fictionalized documentary about the Sex Pistols, produced by the group’s former manager Malcolm McLaren and directed by Julien Temple.
During the brief and chaotic ascendancy of the Sex Pistols, Vicious met eventual girlfriend and manager Nancy Spungen. Spungen and Vicious entered a destructive codependent relationship based on drug use. This culminated in Spungen’s death from an apparent stab wound while staying in New York City‘s Hotel Chelsea with Vicious. Under suspicion of having committed Spungen’s murder, Vicious was released on bail; he was later arrested again for assaulting Todd Smith, brother of Patti Smith, at a night club, and underwent drug rehabilitation on Rikers Island. In celebration of Vicious’ release from prison, his mother hosted a party for him at his girlfriend’s residence in Greenwich Village, which was attended notably by the Misfits bassist Jerry Only.
Vicious’ mother had been supplying him with drugs and paraphernalia since he was young, and assisted him in procuring heroin late that night. Vicious died in his sleep, having overdosed on the heroin his mother had procured.
Less than four weeks after Vicious’ death, the soundtrack album of The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle was released. Later that year, on 15 December, a compilation of live material recorded during his brief solo career was packaged and released as Sid Sings.
ABOVE IS AN EXCEPTIONALLY SCARCE AND RARE SIGNED BY BOTH PHOTOGRAPH OF SID AND NANCY TOGETHER .
BELOW IS THE ICONIC AND CONTROVERSIAL ALBUM COVER OF THE SEX PISTOLS …” NEVER MIND THE BOLLOCKS HERE’S THE SEX PISTOLS ” THIS BEING A FULLY SIGNED BY THE ORIGINAL PISTOLS LINE UP ON A RARE RUSSIAN VERSION OF THE ALBUM .
Nancy Spungen death and Sid Vicious arrest
Sid Vicious mugshot 9 December 1978
On the morning of 12 October 1978, Vicious claimed to have awoken from a drugged stupor to find Nancy Spungen dead on the bathroom floor of their room in the Hotel Chelsea in Manhattan, New York. She had suffered a single stab wound to her abdomen and appeared to have bled to death. The knife used had been bought by Vicious on 42nd Street and was identical to a “007” flip-knife given to punk rock vocalist Stiv Bators of the Dead Boys by Dee Dee Ramone. According to Dee Dee’s wife at the time, Vera King Ramone, Vicious had bought the knife after seeing Stiv’s. Vicious was arrested and charged with her murder.[He said they had fought that night but gave conflicting versions of what happened next, saying, “I stabbed her, but I never meant to kill her”, then saying that he did not remember and at one point during the argument Spungen had fallen onto the knife
On 22 October, ten days after Spungen’s death, Vicious attempted suicide by slitting his wrist with a smashed light bulb and was subsequently hospitalized at Bellevue Hospital where he also tried killing himself by jumping from a window as well as shouting “I want to be with my Nancy” or other similar words, but was pulled back by hospital staff. In an interview he gave in November 1978, he said that Nancy’s death was “meant to happen” and that “Nancy always said she’d die before she was 21.” Near the end of the interview, he was asked if he was having fun. In reply, he asked the interviewer if he was kidding, adding that he would like to be “under the ground.” It was also at Bellevue that he met his lawyer James Merberg, who did everything he could to keep Vicious out of jail.
SID VICIOUS SUICIDE BY OVERDOSE
On the evening of February 1, 1979, a small gathering to celebrate Vicious having made bail was held at the 63 Bank Street, New York apartment of his new girlfriend, Michelle Robinson. Sid and Michelle had started dating in November after Sid was released from Bellevue Hospital the previous October. Vicious was clean, having been on a detoxification methadone program during his time at Rikers Island. At the dinner gathering, however, Sid had some heroin delivered by his friend, English photographer Peter Kodick, against the wishes of Sid’s girlfriend and some other people at the party. It was also during this party that Sid had apparently spent the hours looking towards the future; he had plans for an album he was going to record to get his life and career on track should he be off the hook. Vicious overdosed at midnight, but everyone who was there that night worked together to get him up and walking around in order to revive him. At 3:00 am, Vicious and Michelle Robinson went to bed together. Vicious died in the night and was discovered dead by Anne and Michelle early the next morning.
In his first interview, appearing in the Daily Mirror‘s June 11, 1977 issue, Vicious said “I’ll probably die by the time I reach 25. But I’ll have lived the way I wanted to.”
A few days after Vicious’ cremation, his mother allegedly found a suicide note in the pocket of his jacket:
We had a death pact, and I have to keep my half of the bargain. Please bury me next to my baby. Bury me in my leather jacket, jeans and motorcycle boots Goodbye.
Since Spungen was Jewish, she was buried in a Jewish cemetery. As Vicious was not Jewish, he could not be buried with her. According to the book Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Jerry Only of the Misfits drove Anne and her sister, and two of Sid’s friends to the cemetery where Nancy was buried and Anne scattered Sid’s ashes over Nancy Spungen’s grave. In the same book, it is alleged that the cemetery didn’t want to be associated with Vicious and his inherent negative reputation, and it is speculated that this was of greater importance to them than the above stated reason he and Nancy weren’t able to be buried together.
ABOVE … A BRIEF INSIGHT INTO THE FIRST SERVING GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICEMAN TO BE KILLED IN THE LINE OF DUTY IN 1861. SERGEANT SAMUEL BEARD WAS , AT THE TIME STATIONED HERE AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL FOR SOME 16 YEARS . THE GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE FORCE WAS FORMED IN 1839, MAKING IT THE SECOND OLDEST COUNTY POLICE FORCE IN THE UK .
INCIDENTALLY , THE FIRST RECORDED DEATH OF A SERVING PARISH CONSTABLE (FORERUNNERS TO THE POLICE FORCE ) IN THE FOREST OF DEAN WAS HENRY THOMPSON IN THE PARISH OF RUARDEAN , 14 MAY 1817 , AGED 31 .
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ON THE HISTORY OF THE GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE FORCE PLEASE CLICK ON THE TWO LINKSHERE OR HERE
BELOW …. A BRIEF LOOK AT THE ENTRANCE TO THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION , LITTLEDEAN JAIL, FEATURING VARIOUS POLICE MANNEQUINS AND OTHER POLICE MEMORABILIA DISPLAYS .
HERE’S JUST A BRIEF PICTORIAL INSIGHT INTO SOME OF THE BRITISH POLICE MEMORABILIA AND EPHEMERA ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL WHICH COVERS THE HISTORY OF THE POLICE THROUGH THE AGES .
THIS COLLECTION IS BELIEVED TO BE ONE OF THE LARGEST PRIVATE COLLECTIONS OF POLICE MEMORABILIA IN THE UK . WE HAVE HUNDREDS OF VINTAGE HAND PAINTED TRUNCHEONS , RESTRAINTS , HELMETS, BADGES, UNIFORMS AND MUCH MORE .
SEE BELOW FOR PICTORIAL SLIDESHOW OF A FEW EXHIBITS ON DISPLAY
SEE BELOW VIDEO FOR EDUCATIONAL INSIGHT INTO THE HISTORY OF THE BRITISH POLICE
A SUPERB PIECE OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE CRIME SCENE MEMORABILIA ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL
JUST ONE OF A GREAT MANY BRITISH POLICE MEMORABILIA ITEMS THROUGH THE AGES ON DISPLAY IN ONE OF THE UK’S LARGEST PRIVATE COLLECTIONS OF LAW AND ORDER MATERIAL .
BELOW IS AN IMAGE OF WHAT IS BELIEVED TO BE ONE OF THE VERY FEW SURVIVING VINTAGE GLOUCESTERSHIRE CONSTABULARY’S FINGERPRINT KITS (CIRCA 1940’S) . COMPLETE WITH IT’S ORIGINAL BOX, INKS, ROLLER, POWDERS AND BRUSHES ETC .ALSO VARIOUS APPROPRIATE DOCUMENTATION FOR FINGERPRINT EVIDENCE PURPOSES . FOR MORE INFORMATION AND PICTURES RELATING TO THIS ITEM CLICK HERE
Picture By: Jules Annan Picture Shows:GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE FINGERPRINT KIT CIRCA 1940’S Date 25TH September 2011 Ref: *World Rights Only* *Unbylined uses will incur an additional discretionary fee!*
A short history of British Police focusing on truncheon and armour – Arms in Action
ORIGINAL PAINTING BY GLOUCESTERSHIRE ARTIST PAUL BRIDGMAN DEPICTING WPC YVONNE FLETCHER, WHO WAS FATALLY SHOT OUTSIDE THE LIBYAN EMBASSY , ST JAMES SQUARE, LONDON IN 1984 . THIS PAINTING IS ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL.
PC DAVID RATHBAND WHO WAS SHOT AND BLINDED BY RAOUL MOAT PERSONAL SIGNED PHOTOGRAPH ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE BRITISH POLICE
The word “Police” means, generally, the arrangements made in all civilised countries to ensure that the inhabitants keep the peace and obey the law. The word also denotes the force of peace officers (or police) employed for this purpose.
In 1829 Sir Richard Mayne wrote:
“The primary object of an efficient police is the prevention of crime: the next that of detection and punishment of offenders if crime is committed. To these ends all the efforts of police must be directed. The protection of life and property, the preservation of public tranquillity, and the absence of crime, will alone prove whether those efforts have been successful and whether the objects for which the police were appointed have been attained.”
In attaining these objects, much depends on the approval and co-operation of the public, and these have always been determined by the degree of esteem and respect in which the police are held. One of the key principles of modern policing in Britain is that the police seek to work with the community and as part of the community.
Origins of policing
The origin of the British police lies in early tribal history and is based on customs for securing order through the medium of appointed representatives. In effect, the people were the police. The Saxons brought this system to England and improved and developed the organisation. This entailed the division of the people into groups of ten, called “tythings”, with a tything-man as representative of each; and into larger groups, each of ten tythings, under a “hundred-man” who was responsible to the Shire-reeve, or Sheriff, of the County.
The tything-man system, after contact with Norman feudalism, changed considerably but was not wholly destroyed. In time the tything-man became the parish constable and the Shire-reeve the Justice of the Peace, to whom the parish constable was responsible. This system, which became widely established in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, comprised, generally, one unarmed able-bodied citizen in each parish, who was appointed or elected annually to serve for a year unpaid, as parish constable. He worked in co-operation with the local Justices in securing observance of laws and maintaining order. In addition, in the towns, responsibility for the maintenance of order was conferred on the guilds and, later, on other specified groups of citizens, and these supplied bodies of paid men, known as “The Watch”, for guarding the gates and patrolling the streets at night.
In the eighteenth century came the beginnings of immense social and economic changes and the consequent movement of the population to the towns. The parish constable and “Watch” systems failed completely and the impotence of the law-enforcement machinery was a serious menace. Conditions became intolerable and led to the formation of the “New Police”.
The Metropolitan Police
In 1829, when Sir Robert Peel was Home Secretary, the first Metropolitan Police Act was passed and the Metropolitan Police Force was established. This new force superseded the local Watch in the London area but the City of London was not covered. Even within the Metropolitan Police District there still remained certain police establishments, organised during the eighteenth century, outside the control of the Metropolitan Police Office, viz:-
The Bow Street Patrols, mounted and foot, the latter commonly called the “Bow Street runners”.
Police Office constables attached to the offices of, and under the control of, the Magistrates.
The Marine or River Police.
By 1839 all these establishments had been absorbed by the Metropolitan Police Force. The City of London Police, which was set up in 1839, remains an independent force to this day.
HISTORY OF THE METROPOLITAN POLICE
Time Line 1829 – 1849
Until 1829, law enforcement had been lacking in organisation. As London expanded during the 18th and 19th centuries the whole question of maintaining law and order had become a matter of public concern. In 1812, 1818 and 1822, Parliamentary committees were appointed to investigate the subject of crime and policing. But it was not until 1828 when Sir Robert Peel set up his committee that the findings paved the way for his police Bill, which led to the setting up of an organised police service in London.
The formation of the Metropolitan Police Force on 29 September 1829 by Sir Robert Peel.
Sir Charles Rowan and Richard Mayne are appointed as Justices of the Peace in charge of the Force.1830PC Joseph Grantham becomes first officer to be killed on duty, at Somers Town, Euston. The Metropolitan Police ranks were increased considerably to 3,300 men.1831Further riots. A crowd attacks Apsley House, home of the Duke of Wellington, and break all the windows. The police eventually restore order.1832Richard Mayne, the Commissioner, tries to clarify the roles of the Magistrates and the Commissioners as the Bow Street Runners continue their existance.1833Coldbath Fields Riot (Grays Inn Road). A major crowd disturbance was dealt with by the Metropolitan Police with controversial use of force.
PC Robert Culley was killed at this event, and the jury returned a verdict of Justifiable Homicide.
1834The Select Committee designated with the task of inquiring into the state of the Police of the Metropolis reported ‘that the Metropolitan Police Force, as respects its influence in repressing crime and the security it has given to persons and property, is one of the most valuable modern institutions’
1835In October a fire breaks out at the Millbank Penitentiary and 400 Metropolitan Police officers and a detachment of the Guards are called to restore order. This prompted the press to call for the police to be put in command at all large fires.
1836The Metropolitan Police absorb the Bow Street Horse Patrol into its control.
1837Select Committee appointed to look into the affairs of the police offices. They also propose that the City of London be placed under the control of the Metropolitan Police.
1838Select Committee finally reports and recommends incorporating of Marine Police and Bow Street Runners into the Metropolitan Police and the disbandment of the Bow Street Office and other Offices. These were all agreed and put into effect.
1839The two Justices of the Peace, Rowan and Mayne are termed Commissioners by the Metropolitan Police Act 1839. Enlargement of the Metropolitan Police District by the same Act
.1840Gould Interrogation case in which Police Sergeant Otway attempts induced self-incrimination in the accused, which is immediately discountenanced by the Courts and Commissioner Richard Mayne.
1841Formation of Dockyard divisions of the Metropolitan police
.1842Formation of the Detective Department
.1843The Woolwich Arsenal became part of the area to be patrolled by the Metropolitan Police
.1844Richard Mayne, Commissioner, called to give evidence to the Select Committee on Dogs. He stated that in the Metropolis there were a rising number of lost or stolen dogs. In the preceding year over 600 dogs were lost and 60 stolen. He declared the law to be in a very unsatisfactory state as people paid money for restoration of dogs. ‘People pay monies to parties whom they have reason to believe have either stolen or enticed them away in order to get the reward…’ Mayne believed it to be organised crime.
1845The Commissioners, in returns to the Home Office, states that the aim of the Force was to have one Policeman to 450 head of population.
1846Plain clothes officers were frequently used at this time, but a June order made clear that two officers per division would be employed on detective duties, but that police in plain clothes must make themselves known if interfered with in their duty.
1847Statistics for the year were; 14,091 robberies; 62,181 people taken in charge, 24,689 of these were summarily dealt with; 5,920 stood trial and 4,551 were convicted and sentenced; 31,572 people were discharged by the magistrates.
The Metropolitan Police were still, despite their good record on crime prevention, facing discipline problems amongst their officers on the 18 divisions, with 238 men being dismissed in the year.
1848Large scale enrolement of Special constables to assist the Metropolitan Police in controlling the Chartist Demonstrations
.1849Authorised strength 5,493. In reality 5,288 were available for duty. The population at this time in London was 2,473,758.
Time Line 1850 – 1869
Retirement of Sir Charles Rowan as joint Commissioner. Captain William Hay is appointed in his place.
The Great Exhibition with its special crowd problems forces the police to temporarily form a new police division. The total manpower of the force at this time was 5,551, covering 688 square miles.
Sir Charles Rowan, first joint Commissioner, dies. In his obituary note of 24 May The Times wrote: “No individual of any rank or station could be more highly esteemed or loved when living, or more regretted in death.”
Lord Dudley Stuart, MP for Marylebone and a persistent critic of the police, suggests in Parliament that the police are not worth the money they cost. He recommends that they be reduced in numbers, and a higher class of officers be recruited to control the constables.
Out of 5,700 in the Metropolitan Force, 2.5% were Scottish, 6.5% Irish. The Commissioner was not happy about employing these officers in areas of high Scottish or Irish ethnic concentrations.
Death of Captain William Hay. Sir Richard Mayne becomes sole Commissioner.
Detective Force increased to 10 men, with an extra Inspector and Sergeant.
The Commissioner Richard Mayne is paid a salary of £1,883, and his two Assistant Commissioners are paid salaries of £800 each.
First acquisition of Police van for conveying prisoners. These were horse drawn, and known as‘Black Marias’.
Police orders of 6 January state “It is a great gratification to the Commissioner that the number of police guilty of the offence of drunkenness during the late Christmas holidays has been much lower than last year… In A, F and R Division only one man was reported in each, and in H Division not one man was reported in the present or last year..”
Police begin the occasional use of hand ambulances for injured, sick or drunk people. Accommodation or ‘ambulance sheds’ are later provided for these in police station yards.
Police orders on the 25 January made allowance for one third of Metropolitan Police officers in Dockyards “to be relieved each Sunday, to give them an opportunity of attending Divine Service…”
The Metropolitan Police act as firemen at the British Museum. The Superintendent in charge said of them “From their manner of doing the work, I should be inclined to place considerable confidence in these men in an emergency.”
1862Further expansion in the Metropolitan Police with the formations of the X and W Divisions in the west, and Y Division in the north
1863Drunkenness is still a problem in the force, and in this year 215 officers were dismissed for this reason
.1864Execution of 5 pirates of the ship ‘Flowery Land’ at Newgate. The Metropolitan Police supply nearly 800 officers to keep the peace.
1865Further extensions of the Metropolitan Police District in terms of the area patrolled in north east London.
1866 3,200 police under the command of Commissioner Richard Mayne were used to control a serious riot in Hyde Park. 28 police were permanently disabled, and Mayne was hit by a stone which cut his head open. He was forced to call in the Military to restore order
.1867The Metropolitan Police are severely criticised after Commissioner Richard Mayne ignores a warning about the Clerkenwell bombing by the Fenians. Mayne offers his resignation, but it is refused.1868Death of Commissioner Sir Richard Mayne. Lieutenant Colonel Douglas Labalmondiere acts as Commissioner.
The standard height for Metropolitan Police officers is raised to 5ft 8ins, except for Thames Division, where it is 5ft 7ins.
As a result of frequent larcenies of linen, the Commissioner Edmund Henderson said, on the 21 April, “Constables are to call at the houses of all persons on their beats having wet linen in their gardens, and caution them of the risk they run in having them stolen…”
Police strike for the first time. Various men are disciplined or dismissed, although these latter are later allowed back in to the Force.
The Metropolitan Police acquire 9 new stations : North Woolwich, Rodney Road (Lock’s Fields), Chislehurst, Finchley, Isleworth, Putney, South Norwood, Harrow and Enfield Town.
A survey of recruiting over a 2 year period showed that of those who had joined the force; 31% came from land jobs, 12% from military services, and 5% from other police jobs. The remainder came mostly from manual jobs. The majority of recruits and serving officers came from outside of London.
New police offices at Great Scotland Yard are taken possession of on 4 October 1875 by the Detective and Public Carriage Departments.
8 January the following order was released : “Relief from duty during severe weather – dufing the present severe weather as much indulgence as possible is to be given to the men on night duty, due regard being had to public safety..”
Charles Vincent was appointed Director of Criminal Investigations, the reformed Detective Branch which became known as C.I.D.
Initial rules for dealing with Murder cases, released on 7 June, stated “the body must not be moved, nor anything about it or in the room or place interfered with, and the public must be excluded..”
Formation of the Convict Supervision Office for the assistance and control of convicts discharged upon license.
Possibly London’s most famous police station, Bow Street, was rebuilt in this year.
The growth of London and the area needing policing is illustrated in Tottenham, (Y Division) when 8 miles of new streets are formed in a year with nearly 4,000 houses on them.
The Metropolitan Police at Devonport Dockyard illustrate the diversity of the role of the force as the Police Fire Brigade has its busiest year since formation with 6 major fires
.1883Special Irish Branch formed
.1884A bomb explodes at Scotland Yard planted by the Fenians. The Special Irish Branch are hit.
1885The strength of the force at this time was 13,319, but statistics show that only 1,383 officers were available for beat duty in the day. The population of London at this time was 5,255,069.Public outrage at the explosions at the Tower of London and Houses of Parliament. Two men are sentenced to penal servitude for life as a result.
1891The Public Carriage and Lost Property Offices move from Great Scotland Yard to the new offices at New Scotland Yard on the 21 March.
1892Dismissals and rank and pay reductions were common at this point, and the case of Pc379A Best whose resignation on 21 July illustrates how the Metropolitan Police attempted to keep its men in order. He was “in possession of a tea-can, the property of another constable, obliterating the owners number, substituting his own name and number, telling a deliberate falsehood in connection therewith; and considered unfit for the police force
”1893PC George Cooke, a serving officer, is convicted for murder and hanged.
1894The Alphonse Bertillon system of identification comes into operation.1895To join the Metropolitan Police the following qualifications were necessary:
to be over 21 and under 27 years of age
to stand clear 5ft 9ins without shoes or stockings
to be able to read well, write legibly and have a fair knowledge of spelling
to be generally intelligent
to be free from any bodily complaint
The bodily complaints for which candidates were rejected included; flat foot, stiffness of joints, narrow chest and deformities of the face.
1896Public Carriage Office and Lost Property Offices amalgamate under the designation ‘Public Carriage Branch’.
1897Metropolitan Police Officers granted a boot allowance instead of being supplied with boots. Police boots at this time were loathed, only Sir Edward Bradford, the Commissioner, believing them suitable.
1898After a series of assaults and the murder of PC Baldwin in the vicinity of the Kingsland Road, there are calls for the Metropolitan Police to be armed with revolvers.
1899High rate of suicides amongst officers. This is blamed by certain commentators on harsh discipline and insensitive handling of the men.
As the century draws to a close it is worth noting that the Metropolitan Police on formation in 1829 had a force of about 3,000 men, and by 1899 16,000. The population of London had grown from 1,500,000 to 7 million.
1900Construction of a new floating police station at Waterloo Pier.Lord Belper Committee inquire into the best system of identification of possible criminals
.1901The Fingerprint Bureau commences operation after the findings of the Belper Report. Anthropometric measurements under the Bertillon system are still used, but begin to decline in importance.
1902The coronation of King Edward VII makes major demands on the police, resulting in 512 police pensioners being recalled for duty. Extra pay, leave and a medal were granted to all serving officers.
1903Sir Edward Bradford retires as Commissioner to be replaced by Edward Henry.
19046 new stations buildt at East Ham, Hackney, John Street, Muswell Hill, North Woolwich and Tower Bridge. 1 is near completion and 2 other started. Major works take place on 23 other stations.
1905An article in Police Review mentions that Pc William Hallett of Y Division, who had retired after 26 years as a mounted officer, had ridden 144,000 miles or more than 5 times around the world in the course of his duty.
1906The Metropolitan Police at this stage in their history are on duty for 13 days a fortnight and have an additional leave of 10 days.
1907Clash between the Metropolitan Police and 800 Suffragettes outside the House of Commons on 13 February. Mounted and Foot officers are used to disperse them, and allegations of brutality are made.
1908Police Review reports “the authorities at Scotland Yard have been seriously discussing the use of dogs as the constable companion and help, and Sir Edward Henry (Commissioner), who regards the innovation sympathetically, considers the only crucial objection to be the sentimental prejudices of the public.”
1909The Tottenham Outrage occurs, in the course of which PC William Tyler and a 10 year old boy are shot dead by anarchists.
Time Line 1910 – 1929
Radio Telegraphy used for the first time, resulting in the capture of Doctor Crippen.
The miners strike in South Wales results in many Metropolitan Police officers assisting to maintain law and order.
1911The Siege of Sidney Street results in armed Metropolitan Police officers taking to the streets with the military to deal with armed anarchist criminals.
1912Assassination attempt on the life of the Commissioner, Sir Edward Henry.
Establishment of the Metropolitan Police Special Constabulary on a permanent basis.
1913The Commissioner calls for legislation to be introduced to restrict the trade in pistols following the assassination attempt on his own life.
1914With the outbreak of war, 24,000 Special Constables are sworn in, and by the end of the year there are 31,000. Annual leave is suspended for the first year of the war.
Lord Trenchard retires as Commissioner, and Sir Philip Game is appointed in his place.
1936The Battle of Cable Street involves the Metropolitan Police in street battles with opposing political factions.
1937The 999 system is introduced.
1938Civil Defence starts with the formation of two Reserves in the event of war. The first are retired officers, the second Special Constables.
1939I.R.A. activity results in 59 explosions in the Metropolitan Police District. 55 people are convicted for these offences.
194098 Metropolitan Police officers killed during air raids.
Click here to read about the MPS officer murdered in Hyde Park during the war
1941Air raid bombings continue, and Holloway police station is destroyed. Somers Town, Sydenham and Brixton stations are too badly damaged to be used.
1942Police officers allowed to volunteer for the Armed Forces.
1943In an attempt to curb housebreaking, the Commissioner Sir Philip Game asks people not to keep furs, saying “they are no doubt warmer, and look nicer than a tweed coat, but a live dog is better than a dead lion.
”1944Looting reaches an all time record.
1945Sir Philip Game retires and is replaced as Commissioner by Harold Scott
.1946The Metropolitan and City Police Company Fraud Department is formed.
1947Metropolitan Police face a deficiency of 4,730 men as a result of the war.
1948Indictable crime rate falls to 126,000 crimes, but this is still 40% higher than before the war.
1949Lord Oakseys committee reports on police pay, recommending small increases and London weighting.
Time Line 1950 – 1969
The Metropolitan Police Roll of Honour is unveiled at Westminster Abbey by the Queen, displaying the names of officers killed in the 1914-1918 and 1939-1945 wars.
Commissioner Harold Scott introduces training of cadets aged 16 – 18 to become police officers.
The Dixon Report advocates many changes in the Metropolitan Police, including greater civilianisation.
Serious understaffing problems, with the force consisting of only 16,000 and needing an estimated 4,000 men, mainly Police Constables.
Formation of the Central Traffic Squad, consisting of 100 men.
Flying Squad makes over 1,000 arrests, a record since its formation.
New Information Room opens at New Scotland Yard.
Sir John Nott-Bower retires as Commissioner. He is replaced by Joseph Simpson.
Indictable offences reach over 160,000, the highest recorded to date.
Traffic Wardens introduced.
Criminal Intelligence Section and Stolen Motor Vehicle Investigation branches established.
1961The Receivers Office moved from Scotland House to new premises at Tintagel House.
The Minicab arrives on the London scene, and the Metropolitan Police obtain 24 convictions for illegal plying for hire.
1962The rate of indictable crimes for this year reaches an all time high – 214,120.
The series ‘Police 5′, designed to prevent crime, begins on BBC.
1963The Commissioner, Joseph Simpson, stresses the need for the Beat system to reduce motorised patrols and deter incidents of crime.
The first computer to be used by the Met (an ICT 1301) was set up in the office of the Receiver for use on pay and crime statistics.
1964The worst year so far this century for crime, with over a quarter of a million indictable crimes.
Regional Crime Squads formed.
Police face major criticism and complaints as a result of the Challenor Case, in which a policeman was diagnosed as paranoid schizophrenic and made infamous for planting evidence
.1965Special Patrol Group formed consisting of 100 officers. It arrested 396 people in its first 9 months of operation.
1966The Commissioner’s Office and the Receiver’s Office are combined.
3 Metropolitan Police officers murdered at Shepherds Bush.
1967The headquarters is moved from the Norman Shaw Building to a new building in Broadway, just off Victoria Street. The name of New Scotland Yard is retained.
Norwell Roberts joins the Met as the first black police officer. He retired after 30 years service with the rank of Detective Sergeant and received the QPM in 1996.1968Sir Joseph Simpson dies in service, and is replaced as Commissioner b
1981Brixton Riots involve the Metropolitan Police in the largest civil disturbance this century.
1982Sir David McNee retires as Commissioner to be replaced by Sir Kenneth Newman.
1983With the aid of the MPS Policy Committee Sir Kenneth Newman devises a new statement of the Principles of Policing, and in doing so changes the emphasis from the primary objectives of policing established by Richard Mayne and Sir Charles Rowan in 1829.
1984PC Jon Gordon lost both legs and part of a hand in the IRA bomb attack on Harrods in 1983. On 10 December 1984 he resumed duty by walking unaided up the steps to his new office.
Whilst policing a demonstration in St James’s Square, WPC Yvonne Fletcher was shot in the back and mortally wounded by shots fired from the Libyan People’s Bureau. WPC Fletcher’s murder led to the creation of the Police Memorial Trust, an organisation dedicated to placing memorials at the locations of fallen officers
1985Tottenham Riots (also known as ‘Broadwater Farm’ riot) result in the murder of PC Keith Blakelock.
1986Identification Parade screens introduced at Clapham police station.
The Police and Criminal Evidence Act comes into force in January.
Mounted Branch celebrates its 150th anniversary.
1987Sir Kenneth Newman retires, and is replaced as Commissioner by Peter Imbert.
1988The Commissioner stresses the need for close community liaison between the Police and Consultative Groups to foster the police / public partnership.
1989‘Plus Programme’ launched to improve the corporate image and quality of the service of the Metropolitan Police. It significantly altered attitudes within the MPS, and included the Statement of Common Purpose and Values.
1997Installation of N.A.F.I.S. the National Automated Fingerprint Identification System.
1998The Metropolitan Police launch the Policing Diversity Strategy in response to the majority of issues raised into the Inquiry into the death of Stephen Lawrence. The aim is to provide better protection to ethnic communities from racial and violent crime and demonstrate fairness in every aspect of policing.
1999The handling of the Greek Embassy siege demonstrates the professionalism of the Metropolitan Police Service.
THE ICONIC, TIMELESS….. THEN CONTROVERSIAL , FOUL-MOUTHED , DRUG-FUELLED AND YET STILL BRILLIANT TO WATCH …… 1979 CLASSIC CULT FILM
HERE’S SOME MORE GREAT INTERACTIVE FOOTAGE FROM THE FILM QUADROPHENIA . A GREAT BRITISH FILM THAT REMAINS AS ICONIC AS WHEN FIRST RELEASED BACK IN 1979 . A GREAT COLLECTIVE CAST LIST …. MANY OF WHOM REMAIN HOUSEHOLD NAMES TODAY …. THEY INCLUDE … RAY WINSTONE , PHIL DANIELS, STING, PHIL DAVIS, LESLIE ASH, TIMOTHY SPALL…ETC ETC…
DO COME VISIT THE QUADROPHENIA COLLECTION HERE AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL IN THE ROYAL FOREST OF DEAN , GLOUCESTERSHIRE ,UK .
PRINT OF THE ORIGINAL PAINTING BY GLOUCESTERSHIRE ARTIST PAUL BRIDGMAN. THE ORIGINAL PAINTING IS ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL
I’M ON MY WAY TO THE QUADROPHENIA EXHIBITION AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL WITH DEAN PARRISH
HERE ON DISPLAY AT THE JAIL WE HAVE THE ORIGINAL “ACE FACE” – GS VESPA SCOOTER AS WAS USED IN THE 1979 ICONIC QUADROPHENIA FILM …. ALONG WITH A 100% REPLICA “JIMMY” … LAMBRETTA SCOOTER BUILT FROM MANY OF THE ORIGINAL PARTS OF THE ORIGINAL SCOOTER AS USED IN THE FILM . CLOTHING , MEMORABILIA AND MUCH MUCH MORE
HERE IS A BRIEF LOOK AT SOME OF THE MANY ORIGINAL SIGNED FILM STILLS FROM SOME OF THE LEADING STARS OF THIS , AT THE TIME … HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL ICONIC BRITISH FILM . SCROLL DOWN THIS PAGE TO SEE MORE OF THE HUNDREDS OF SIGNED FILM STILLS AND VARIOUS OTHER FILM MEMORABILIA HERE ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL’S – QUADROPHENIA COLLECTION .
Don’t worry the original “Ace Face ” GS Vespa Scooter as used in the film and salvaged for posterity is on display here at the jail and is not the one that is seen going over the cliff face and smashed to bits on the rocks below.
Incidently for all Quadrophenia fans out there ….. a total of 5 number “Ace Face” GS Vespa Scooters were built and used in the film….. 3 of which were used for the last scene (going over the cliff) , 1 was written off during filming and destroyed and we have the only surviving scooter that was ridden and used by both the “Ace Face” and “Jimmy” during filming.
WE HAVE ALSO SINCE ADDED “A TASTE OF NORTHERN SOUL DOWN HERE IN THE SOUTH EXHIBITION ” INCLUDING VARIOUS ORIGINAL NORTHERN SOUL MEMORABILIA AND EPHEMERA .
NOT FORGETTING OF COURSE …. OUR “1960’S REVISITED” COLLECTIONS .
A MUST SEE VISITOR ATTRACTION IN IT’S OWN RIGHT FOR ALL QUADROPHENIA FANS, SCOOTER BOYS & GIRLS, MODS, NORTHERN SOUL FANS , TWO-TONE AND SKA FANS, SKINHEADS. REGGAE SKINHEADS AND TAMLA MOTOWN FANS TOO.
LIAM GALLAGHER FORMER FRONTMAN OF OASIS AND NOW BEADY EYE SEEN HERE USING THE ORIGINAL “ACE FACE” GS VESPA AND “HELPLESS DANCER” SCOOTERS FROM THE QUADROPHENIA COLLECTION HERE AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL FOR A PHOTO SHOOT TO LAUNCH HIS PRETTY GREEN CLOTHING RANGE . THE PHOTO SHOOT TOOK PLACE AT BEACHY HEAD , EASTBOURNE AND AT SALTASH LIDO, NEAR BRIGHTON BOTH SCOOTERS USED BEING FROM THE QUADROPHENIA COLLECTION HERE .
ABOVE IS A PICTORIAL SLIDESHOW INSIGHT INTO SOME OF THE GREAT MANY DISPLAY ITEMS RELATING TO THE ICONIC 1979 CULT BRITISH FILM -QUADROPHENIA EXHIBITED IN ONE OF THE OUTBUILDINGS HERE AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL . IT INCLUDES A MASS OF ORIGINAL SIGNED FILM STILLS , FILM POSTERS, CLOTHING, ORIGINAL FILM SCRIPT , CLOTHING AND MUCH MORE……..
NOT FORGETTING OF COURSE THE ICONIC ORIGINAL ACE FACE GS VESPA SCOOTER FEATURED IN THE FILM AND OTHER SCOOTERS ETC.
ASIDE FROM THE QUADROPHENIA COLLECTION AND AS AN ADD-ON WE HAVE SINCE INCLUDED ….. “A TASTE OF NORTHERN SOUL DOWN HERE IN THE SOUTH OF ENGLAND” EXHIBITION AREA AS WELL AS FEATURING A 1960’S REVISITED COLLECTION .THIS INCLUDES A MASS OF ORIGINAL SIGNED PHOTOGRAPHS , VINYL RECORDS AND OTHER MEMORABILIA ITEMS
Set in Lancashire in 1974, the film follows Matt and John as they leave behind a humdrum life of youth clubs and factory lines to chase a dream of travelling to the US, unearthing unknown soul 45s and establishing themselves as top DJ’s on the Northern soul music scene. Their dance and amphetamine fuelled quest brings them into contact with some of the darker elements of the scene and tests their friendship to its limits
A BRIEF INSIGHT INTO SOME OF THE GREAT MANY EXHIBIT ITEMS ON THE NORTHERN SOUL FRONTS ON DISPLAY AT THE “TASTE OF NORTHERN SOUL DOWN HERE IN THE SOUTH EXHIBITION “….INCLUDES ORIGINAL WIGAN CASINO, TWISTED WHEEL AND OTHER NORTHERN SOUL MEMBERSHIP CARDS, FLYERS, ORIGINAL AND VINTAGE WOVEN CLUB PATCHES , VINTAGE PATCHED SPORTS HOLDALLS,VINYL AND OTHER ASSOCIATED MEMORABILIA .
Because of the scarcity of the original single and the high quality of the music (it was one of the most popular records in the Northern Soul movement), it has been championed as one of the rarest and most valuable records in history (along with other “impossible to find” records by such acts as Bessie Smith, Louis Armstrong, and the Five Sharps).
HERE BELOW IS A VERY , VERY BRIEF INSIGHT GALLERY INTO A FEW OF THE ORIGINAL NORTHERN SOUL MEMORABILIA ITEMS HERE ON DISPLAY . DO COME VISIT TO SEE WHAT IS UNDOUBTEDLY ONE OF THE LARGEST PRIVATE COLLECTIONS OF SUCH SOUGHT AFTER MATERIAL .
DO SEE MORE PICTORIAL CONTENT IN SOME OF OUR PREVIOUS POSTS ON OUR FACEBOOK PAGE AS TO FURTHER EXHIBIT ITEMS HERE ON DISPLAY IN OUR “A TASTE OF NORTHERN SOUL DOWN HERE IN THE SOUTH OF ENGLAND EXHIBITION”
Open The Door To Your Heart by Darrell Banks: ‘Holy grail’ Northern Soul single sells for £14,543
A single dubbed the rarest record in the world sold for £14,543 at auction tonight.
Derek Smiley, a Northern Soul DJ in Cambridge, was among the bidders for Darrell Banks’ club classic Open the Door to Your Heart, but gave up when the price went “out of his league”.
John Manship, who hosted the online auction at raresoulman.co.uk, said the website crashed as “thousands upon thousands” of people visited the page as the auction came to a close at 6pm.
He said: “I’ve never seen anything like it before. The winner came in a few seconds before the end which is just a ridiculous thing to do, but he’s won it fair and square.”
He said all the bidders were previously known to him, apart from the winner, who he said lived in Britain. —————————————————————————————————————
Northern soul is a music and dance movement that emerged from the British mod scene, initially in northern England in the late 1960s. Northern soul mainly consists of a particular style of black Americansoul music based on the heavy beat and fast tempo of the mid-1960s Tamla Motown sound. The northern soul movement, however, generally eschews Motown or Motown-influenced music that has met with significant mainstream success. The recordings most prized by enthusiasts of the genre are usually by lesser-known artists, and were initially released only in limited numbers, often by small regional United States labels such as Ric-Tic and Golden World (Detroit), Mirwood (Los Angeles) and Shout and Okeh (New York/Chicago).
Northern soul is also associated with particular dance styles and fashions that grew out of the underground rhythm & soul scene of the late 1960s, at venues such as the Twisted Wheel in Manchester. This scene (and the associated dances and fashions) quickly spread to other UK dancehalls andnightclubs like the Catacombs (Wolverhampton), the Highland Rooms at Blackpool Mecca, Golden Torch (Stoke-on-Trent), and Wigan Casino. As the favoured beat became more uptempo and frantic, by the early 1970s, northern soul dancing became more athletic, somewhat resembling the later dance styles of disco and break dancing. Featuring spins, flips, karate kicks and backdrops, club dancing styles were often inspired by the stage performances of touring American soul acts such as Little Anthony & The Imperials and Jackie Wilson.
During the Northern soul scene’s initial years in the late 1960s and early 1970s, popular Northern Soul records were usually not recent releases, and generally dated from the mid-1960s. This meant that the movement was sustained (and “new” recordings added to playlists) by prominent DJs discovering rare and previously overlooked records. Later on, certain clubs and DJs began to move away from the 1960s Motown sound and began to play newer releases with a more contemporary sound.
Photograph of a sew-on patch featuring the clenched fist symbol adopted by the northern soul movement
The phrase northern soul emanated from the record shop Soul City in Covent Garden, London, which was run by journalist Dave Godin. It was first publicly used in Godin’s weekly column in Blues and Soul magazine in June 1970. In a 2002 interview with Chris Hunt of Mojo magazine, Godin said he had first come up with the term in 1968, to help employees at Soul City differentiate the more modern funkier sounds from the smoother, Motown-influenced soul of a few years earlier. With contemporary black music evolving into what would eventually become known as funk, to differentiate the tastes of the die-hard soul-lovers of the north, whose musical preferences seemed to have stalled somewhere in that classic mid-’60s era of Motown-sounding black American dance, Godin referred to their requests as ‘Northern Soul’:
I had started to notice that northern football fans who were in London to follow their team were coming into the store to buy records, but they weren’t interested in the latest developments in the black American chart. I devised the name as a shorthand sales term. It was just to say ‘if you’ve got customers from the north, don’t waste time playing them records currently in the U.S. black chart, just play them what they like – ‘Northern Soul’.
The venue most commonly associated with the early development of the northern soul scene was the Twisted Wheel in Manchester and the Room at The Top in Wigan. The club began in the early 1950s as a beatnik coffee bar called The Left Wing, but in early 1963, the run-down premises were leased by two Manchester businessmen (Ivor and Phil Abadi) and turned into a music venue. Initially the Twisted Wheel mainly hosted live music on the weekends andDisc Only nights during the week. Starting in September 1963, the Abadi brothers promoted all-night parties at the venue on Saturday nights, with a mixture of live and recorded music. DJ Roger Eagle, a collector of imported American soul, jazz and rhythm and blues, was booked around this time, and the club’s reputation as a place to hear and dance to the latest American R&B music began to grow.
Throughout the mid-1960s, the Twisted Wheel became the focus of Manchester’s emerging mod scene, with a music policy that reflected Eagle’s eclectic tastes in soul and jazz, and featuring live performances by British beat musicians and American R&B stars. Gradually, the music policy became less eclectic and shifted heavily towards fast-paced soul, in response to the demands of the growing crowds of amphetamine-fuelled dancers who flocked to the all-nighters. Dismayed at the change in music policy and the frequent drug raids by the police, Eagle quit the club in 1966
Commemorative sew-on patch similar to those worn by Twisted Wheel members.
By 1968 the reputation of the Twisted Wheel and the type of music being played there had grown nationwide.Soul fans were traveling from all over the United Kingdom to attend the Saturday all-nighters, with resident ‘All Niter’ DJ Bob Dee compiling & supervising  the playlist and utilising the newly developed slip-cueing technique to spin the vinyl between 1968 and the club’s eventual closure in 1971 . After attending one of the venue’s all-nighters in November 1970, Godin wrote: “…it is without doubt the highest and finest I have seen outside of the USA… never thought I’d live to see the day where people could so relate the rhythmic content of Soul music to bodily movement to such a skilled degree!” The venue’s owners had successfully been able to fill the vacancy left by Eagle with a growing roster of specialist soul DJs.
The Twisted Wheel gained a reputation as a drug haven, and under pressure from the police and other authorities, the club closed in January 1971. However, by the late 1960s, the popularity of the music and lifestyle associated with the club had spread further across the north and midlands of England, and a number of new venues had begun to host soul all-nighters. These included the King Mojo in Sheffield, The Catacombs in Wolverhampton, Room at the Top in Wigan and Va Va’s in Bolton.
Commemorative sew-on patch similar to those worn by Golden Torch members.
Northern soul reached the peak of its popularity in the mid to late 1970s. At this time, there were soul clubs in virtually every major town in the midlands and the north of England. The three venues regarded as the most important in this decade were the Golden Torch in Tunstall, Stoke (1971 to 1972), Blackpool Mecca (1971 to 1979) and Wigan Casino (1973 to 1981).
Although Wigan Casino is now the most well known, the best attended northern soul all-night venue at the beginning of the decade was the Golden Torch, where regular Friday night soul “all-nighters” began in late 1970. Chris Burton, the owner, stated that in 1972, the club had a membership of 12,500, and 62,000 separate customer visits. Despite its popularity, the club closed down due to licensing problems in March, 1972 and attention switched to soul nights at Blackpool Mecca’s Highland Room, which had started hosting rare soul nights in late 1971.
Commemorative sew-on patch similar to those designed by Russ Winstanley and sold at the Wigan Casino.
Wigan Casino began its weekly soul all-nighters in September 1973. Wigan Casino had a much larger capacity than many competing venues and ran its events from 2am until 8am. There was a regular roster of DJs, including the promoter Russ Winstanley. By 1976, the club boasted a membership of 100,000 people, and in 1978, was voted the world’s number one discotheque by the American magazine Billboard. This was during the heyday of the Studio 54 nightclub in New York City. By the late 1970s, the club had its own spin-off record label, Casino Classics.
By this time, Wigan Casino was coming under criticism from many soul fans. Contemporary black American soul was changing with the advent of funk, disco and jazz-funk, and the supply of recordings with the fast-paced northern soul sound began to dwindle rapidly. Wigan Casino DJs resorted to playing any kind of record that matched the correct tempo. Also, the club was subjected to heavy media coverage and began to attract many otherwise uninterested people whom the soul purists did not approve of.
Blackpool Mecca was popular throughout the 1970s, although the venue never hosted all-nighters. The regular Saturday night events began at 8pm and finished at 2am, and initially, some dancers would begin their evenings at Blackpool Mecca and then transfer to Wigan Casino. In 1974, the music policy at Blackpool Mecca sharply diverged from Wigan Casino’s, with the regular DJs Ian Levine and Colin Curtis including newly released US soul in their sets. Whilst the tempo was similar to the earlier Motown Records-style recordings, this shift in emphasis heralded a slightly different style of northern soul dancing and dress styles at Blackpool Mecca and created a schism in the northern soul movement between Wigan Casino’s traditionalists and Blackpool Mecca’s wider approach, which accepted the more contemporary sounds of Philly soul, early disco and funk.
Other major northern soul venues in the 1970s include The Catacombs in Wolverhampton, Va Va’s in Bolton, the ‘Talk of The North’ all-nighters at The Pier and Winter Gardens in Cleethorpes, Tiffany’s in Coalville, Samantha’s in Sheffield, Neil Rushton‘s ‘Heart of England’ soul club all-dayers at The Ritz in Manchester and the Nottingham Palais. As the 1970s progressed, the northern soul scene expanded even further nationally. There was a notable scene in the east of England with all-nighters at the St. Ivo Centre in St. Ives, the Phoenix Soul club at the Wirrina Stadium in Peterborough and the Howard Mallett in Cambridge. Other towns with notable northern soul venues at this time included Kettering, Coventry, Bournemouth, Southampton and Bristol.
When Wigan Casino closed in 1981, many believed that the northern soul scene was on the verge of disintegrating. However, the 1970s mod revival, the thriving scooterboy subculture and the acid jazzmovement produced a new wave of fans. The popularity of the music was further bolstered in the 1980s by a wave of reissues and compilation albums from small British independent record labels. Many of these labels were set up by DJs and collectors who had been part of the original northern soul scene. The 1980s — often dismissed as a low period for northern soul by those who had left the scene in the 1970s — featured almost 100 new venues in places as diverse as Bradford, London, Peterborough, Leighton Buzzard, Whitchurch, Coventry and Leicester. Pre-eminent among the 1980s venues were Stafford‘s Top of the World and London‘s 100 Club.
Today there are regular northern soul events in various parts of the United Kingdom, such as The Nightshift Club all-nighters at the Bisley Pavilion in Surrey and the Prestatyn Weekender in North Wales. In an August 2008 article in The Times, broadcaster Terry Christian argued that northern soul was undergoing a distinct revival in the late 2000s. Christian cited the popularity of regular revivals of Twisted Wheel soul all-nighters at the original venue (in Whitworth Street, Manchester) plus the Beat Boutique northern soul all-nighters at the Ruby Lounge and MMUnion in Manchester. Many of those who ceased their involvement in the late 1970s have now returned to the scene and regularly participate in such events. As of 2009, Paul O’Grady has included a Northern Soul Triple in his weekly BBC Radio 2 show. He plays three northern soul hits, often at the request of his listeners.
The northern soul soul movement has inspired the movie Soulboy (2010), directed by Shimmy Marcus, and at least one novel: Do I Love You? (2008) by Paul McDonald In June 2010, theatre director Fiona Laird wrote and directed Keeping the Faith, a musical based on the Wigan Casino scene and featuring northern soul music. It was staged at the Central School of Speech and Drama’s Webber Douglas Studio, with a revival at the same venue in September 2010.
In the book Last Night A DJ Saved My Life: the history of the DJ, the authors describe northern soul as “a genre built from failures”, stating: “…Northern Soul was the music made by hundreds of singers and bands who were copying the Detroit sound of Motown pop. Most of the records were complete failures in their own time and place… but in northern England from the end of the 1960s through to its heyday in the middle 1970s, were exhumed and exalted.”
The music style most associated with northern soul is the heavy, syncopated beat and fast tempo of mid-1960s Motown Records, which was usually combined with soulful vocals. These types of records, which suited the athletic dancing that was prevalent, became known on the scene as stompers. Notable examples include Tony Clarke’s “Landslide” (popularised by Ian Levine at Blackpool Mecca) and Gloria Jones’ “Tainted Love” (purchased by Richard Searling on a trip to the United States in 1973 and popularised at Va Va’s in Bolton, and later, Wigan Casino). According to northern soul DJ Ady Croadsell, viewed retrospectively, the earliest recording to possess this style was the 1965 single “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)” by The Four Tops, although that record was never popular in the northern soul scene because it was too mainstream.
Other related music styles also gained acceptance in the northern soul scene. Slower, less-danceable soul records were often played, such as Barbara Mills’ “Queen Of Fools” (popular in 1972 at the Golden Torch) and The Mob’s “I Dig Everything About You”. Every all-nighter at Wigan Casino ended with the playing of three well-known northern soul songs with a particular going home theme. These came to be known as the “3 before 8” and were: “Time Will Pass You By” by Tobi Legend, “Long After Tonight Is Over” by Jimmy Radcliffe, and “I’m On My Way” by Dean Parrish.Commercial pop songs that matched the up-tempo beat of the stompers were also played at some venues, including The Ron Grainer Orchestra’s instrumental “Theme From Joe 90” at Wigan Casino and The Just Brothers’ surf-guitar song “Sliced Tomatoes” at Blackpool Mecca.
As the scene developed in the mid and late 1970s, the more contemporary and rhythmically sophisticated sounds of disco and Philly Soul became accepted at certain venues following its adoption at Blackpool Mecca. This style is typified musically by the O’Jays‘ “I Love Music” (UK #13, January 1976), which gained popularity prior to its commercial release at Blackpool Mecca in late 1975. The record that initially popularised this change is usually cited as The Carstair’s “It Really Hurts Me Girl” (Red Coach), a record initially released late in 1973 on promotional copies – but quickly withdrawn due to lack of interest from American Radio stations. The hostility towards any contemporary music style from northern soul traditionalists at Wigan Casino led to the creation of the spin-off modern soul movement in the early 1980s.
As venues such as the Twisted Wheel evolved into northern soul clubs in the late 1960s and the dancers increasingly demanded newly discovered sounds, DJs began to acquire and play rare and often deleted US releases that had not gained even a release in the UK.” These records were sometimes obtained through specialist importers or, in some cases, by DJs visiting the US and purchasing old warehouse stock. Some records were so rare that only a handful of copies were known to exist, so northern soul DJs and clubs became associated with particular records that were almost exclusively on their own playlists. Many of the original artists and musicians remained unaware of their new-found popularity for many years.
As the scene increased in popularity, a network of UK record dealers emerged who were able to acquire further copies of the original vinyl and supply them to fans at prices commensurate with their rarity and desirability. Later on, a number of UK record labels were able to capitalise on the booming popularity of northern soul and negotiate licenses for certain popular records from the copyright holders and reissue them as new 45s or compilation LPs. Amongst these labels were Casino Classics, PYE Disco Demand, Inferno, Kent Modern and Goldmine.
The notoriety of DJs on the northern soul scene was enhanced by the possession of rare records, but exclusivity was not enough on its own, and the records had to conform to a certain musical style and gain acceptance on the dance floor.Frank Wilson‘s “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” has been rated the rarest and most valuable northern soul single.
Many songs from the 1960s that were revived on the northern soul scene were reissued by their original labels and became UK top 40 hits in the 1970s. These include The Tams‘ 1964 recording “Hey Girl Don’t Bother Me” (UK #1, July 1971) – which was popularized by Midlands DJ Carl Dene –The Fascinations‘ 1966 single “Girls Are Out To Get You” (UK #32, 1971), The Newbeats‘ 1965 American hit “Run Baby Run” (UK #10, Oct 1971), Bobby Hebb‘s “Love Love Love” which was originally the B-side of his 1966 U.S. #1 “Sunny” (UK #32 August 1972), Robert Knight‘s “Love On A Mountain Top” of 1968 (UK #10, November 1973), and R. Dean Taylor’s “There’s A Ghost In My House” from 1967 (UK #3, May 1974).
The northern soul scene also spawned many lesser chart hits, including Al Wilson‘s 1967 cut “The Snake” (UK #41 in 1975), Dobie Gray‘s “Out On The Floor” (UK #42, September 1975) and Little Anthony & The Imperials‘ “Better Use Your Head” (UK #42 July 1976).
A variety of recordings were made later in the 1970s that were specifically aimed at the northern soul scene, which also went on to become UK top 40 hits. These included: The Exciters’ “Reaching For The Best” (UK #31, October 1975), L.J Johnson’s “Your Magic Put A Spell On Me” (UK #27, February 1976),Tommy Hunt’s “Loving On The Losing Side” (UK #28, August 1976) and “Footsee” by Wigan’s Chosen Few (UK #9, January 1975).
“Goodbye Nothing To Say”, by the white British group The Javells, was identified by Dave McAleer of Pye’s Disco Demand label as having an authentic northern soul feel. McAleer gave a white label promotional copy to Russ Winstanley (a Wigan Casino DJ and promoter), and the tune became popular amongst the dancers at the venue. Disco Demand then released the song as a 45 RPM single, reaching UK #26 in November 1974. To promote the single on BBC’s Top Of The Pops, the performer was accompanied by two Wigan Casino dancers.
In 2000, Wigan Casino DJ Kev Roberts compiled The Northern Soul Top 500, which was based on a survey of northern soul fans. The top ten songs were: “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)” by Frank Wilson, “Out on the Floor” by Dobie Gray, “You Didn’t Say a Word” by Yvonne Baker, “The Snake” by Al Wilson, “Long After Tonight is Over” by Jimmy Radcliffe, “Seven Day Lover” by James Fountain, “You Don’t Love Me” by Epitome of Sound, “Looking for You” by Garnet Mimms, “If That’s What You Wanted” by Frankie Beverly & the Butlers, and “Seven Days Too Long” by Chuck Wood.
African American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos performed their Black Powersalute at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City
A large proportion of northern soul’s original audience came from within the 1960s modsubculture. In the late 1960s, when some mods started to embrace freakbeat andpsychedelic rock, other mods – especially those in northern England – stuck to the original mod soundtrack of soul and Blue Beat. From the latter category, two strands emerged: skinheads and the northern soul scene.
Early northern soul fashion included strong elements of the classic mod style, such as button-down Ben Sherman shirts, blazers with centre vents and unusual numbers of buttons, Trickers and brogue shoes and shrink-to-fit Levi’s jeans. Some non-mod items, such as bowling shirts, were also popular. Later, northern soul dancers started to wear light and loose-fitting clothing for reasons of practicality. This included high-waisted, baggy Oxford trousers and sports vests. These were often covered with sew-on badges representing soul club memberships.
The clenched fist symbol that has become associated with the northern soul movement (frequently depicted on sew-on patches) emanates from the Black Powercivil rights movement of the 1960s in the United States. The symbol is related to the salute given by African-American athletes at the 1968 Olympic games in Mexico City.On his visit to the Twisted Wheel in 1971, Dave Godin recalled that “…very many young fellows wore black “right on now” racing gloves … between records one would hear the occasional cry of “Right on now!” or see a clenched gloved fist rise over the tops of the heads of the dancers!”
In 2007, Andrew Wilson (lecturer in criminology at the University of Sheffield) published the extensively researched sociological study Northern Soul: Music, drugs and subcultural identity. This work details in some depth the lifestyles associated with the Northern soul scene and the extensive use of Amphetamines (otherwise known asspeed) by many involved. Wilson argues that, whilst a significant proportion did not use drugs, drug usage was heavily ingrained in the fast-paced culture of the northern soul scene and contributed to participants’ ability to stay up all-night dancing. Many clubs and events were closed down or refused licences due to concerns of local authorities that soul nights attracted drug dealers and users. Roger Eagle, DJ at the Twisted Wheel club in Manchester, cited Amphetamine usage amongst participants as his reason for quitting the club in 1967. Of the regular attendees he said, “All they wanted was fast-tempo black dance music… [but they were] too blocked on amphetamines to articulate exactly which Jackie Wilson record they wanted me to play.”
The northern soul movement is cited by many as being a significant step towards the creation of contemporary club culture and of the superstar DJ culture of the 2000s. Two of the most notable DJs from the original northern soul era are Russ Winstanley and Ian Levine. As in contemporary club culture, northern soul DJs built up a following based on satisfying the crowd’s desires for music that they could not hear anywhere else. The competitiveness between DJs to unearth ‘in-demand’ sounds led them to cover up the labels on their records, giving rise to the modern white label pressing. Many argue that northern soul was instrumental in creating a network of clubs, DJs, record collectors and dealers in the UK, and was the first music scene to provide the British charts with records that sold entirely on the strength of club play.
A technique employed by northern soul DJs in common with their later counterparts was the sequencing of records to create euphoric highs and lows for the crowd. Many of the DJ personalities and their followers involved in the original northern soul movement went on to become important figures in the house and dance music scenes. Notable among these are Mike Pickering, who introduced house music to The Haçienda in Manchester in the 1980s, the influential DJ Colin Curtis, Neil Rushton the A&R manager of the House music record label Kool Kat Music and the dance record producers Pete Waterman, Johnathan Woodliffe, Ian Dewhirst and Ian Levine.
Northern soul has influenced several notable musicians. Terry Christian — in his 2008 article about northern soul for The Times — wrote, “There’s an instant credibility for any artist or brand associated with a scene that has always been wild, free and grassroots.”Soft Cell had chart success with covers of two popular northern soul songs, “Tainted Love” (originally recorded by Gloria Jones) and “What?” (originally recorded by Judy Street). Soft Cell member Dave Ball used to occasionally attend soul nights at Blackpool Mecca and Wigan Casino.Moloko‘s video for “Familiar Feeling” is set against a northern soul backdrop and was directed by Elaine Constantine, a longstanding northern soul enthusiast. The video was choreographed by DJ Keb Darge, who rose to prominence at the Stafford Top Of The World all-nighters in the 1980s.
Private: Lucian Freud spoke candidly about his gambling problem
Artist Lucian Freud ran up half a million pounds in gambling debts with gangland crimelords the Kray brothers.
Britain’s most renowned living artist said the brothers ‘forced’ money on him to feed his addiction, but he was only able to repay them in small amounts.
The 87-year-old confessed he once cancelled an exhibition out of fear they would demand more money if they saw he was earning.
The situation got so bad that at one point he received a warning from the police.
In a revealing interview, the notoriously private artist discussed the nights he spent in police cells for fighting, his relationship with Kate Moss and how he escorted Greta Garbo to nightclubs.
‘She was the most famous person in the world at that stage. I was very young, she was in her late thirties,’ he said of the actress.
‘The people in the clubs could not believe it.’
He said of Kate Moss, whom he met through his fashion designer daughter Bella: ‘She was interesting company and full of surprising behaviour,’ said Freud, who in 2002 painted a portrait of the heavily-pregnant and naked model in 2002.
In an interview with the Evening Standard, he said he was sometimes annoyed when Miss Moss was late for sittings ‘only in that way that girls are’.
He believes the painting was unsuccessful because photographers waited outside his house, disturbing his obsession with privacy.
Freud had a well-documented relationship with the Kray twins Reggie and Ronnie – with Reggie counting Freud amongst his favourite painters.
Club owner: Reggie Kray, centre, with Eddie Pucci, Frank Sinatra’s bodyguard and Shirley Bassey in the early Sixties
Their paths crossed in the swinging Sixties demi-monde of West End nightclub life.
As club owners the Krays mixed with politicians and great entertainers of the day including Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland Shirley Bassey and Barbara Windsor.
The artist once said of his gambling: ‘I always went all out. The idea of it being a sport seemed to me insane. The thing I liked was risking everything. Losing everything to do with money.’
A self-portrait of Freud nursing a black eye after a punch-up with a taxi driver sold for more than £2.8million last month
He also explained his reasons for stopping gambling: ‘As I got more money, they wouldn’t take the bets and it just became pointless.
‘If I’d been in very high-powered card games with grand, rich people, perhaps, but that wasn’t what I did.’
The artist also disclosed he has four new muses: he is painting his assistant David Dawson; artist and printmaker Perienne Christian, 26; and two restaurateurs – Jeremy King, co-owner of The Wolseley where Freud frequently eats, and Sally Clarke, owner of Clarke’s in Kensington.
Artist and gambler: Freud in 1958
Freud is the grandson of Sigmund Freud and was born in Berlin where, at the age of nine, he photographed Hitler.
The family moved to England in 1933 to escape the rise of Nazism, and became British citizens six years later.
Freud reveals their naturalisation was made possible by the intervention of the Duke of Kent.
Freud’s painting Benefits Supervisor Sleeping, a life-size portrait of Jobcentre worker Sue Tilley, sold for £17.2million in 2008.
It set the world record for the highest price paid in an auction for a work of art by a living artist.
He remains ambitious though, adding: I work every day and night. I don’t do anything else. There is no point otherwise.’
This month, a self-portrait of Freud nursing a black eye after a punch-up with a taxi driver sold for more than £2.8million at auction.
The artist has previously discussed his habit of getting into scrapes, saying: ‘I used to have a lot of fights.
‘It wasn’t because I liked fighting, it was really just that people said things to me to which I felt the only reply was to hit them.
Iconic figures that died too young …. some say self inflicted and deservedly so , whilst others would strongly disagree…. including legendary Beatles songwriter/singer -John Lennon are all featured here on display at Littledean Jail alongside our True Crime, Murderabilia, Sleaze & Scandal, The bizarre and the Taboo subject matters .
Below a picture of John Lennon and wife Yoko Ono posing naked together
Headline news reporting the shooting of Lennon
Lennon’s assassin – Mark Chapman
Mark Chapman seeking autograph from John Lennon shortly before shooting him
Lennon was pronounced dead on arrival at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center, where it was stated that nobody could have lived for more than a few minutes after sustaining such injuries. Shortly after local news stations reported Lennon’s death, crowds gathered at Roosevelt Hospital and in front of the Dakota.
As Lennon and Ono walked to their limousine, they were approached by several people seeking autographs, and among them was Chapman. It was common for fans to wait outside the Dakota to meet Lennon and ask for his autograph. Chapman, a 25-year-old security guard from Honolulu, Hawaii, had previously travelled to New York to murder Lennon in October (before the release of Double Fantasy), but had changed his mind and returned home. On the evening in question, Chapman silently handed Lennon a copy of Double Fantasy, and Lennon obliged with an autograph After signing the album, Lennon asked, “Is this all you want?” Chapman smiled and nodded in agreement. Photographer, and Lennon fan, Paul Goresh, took a photo of the encounter. Chapman had been waiting for Lennon outside the Dakota since mid-morning, and had even approached the Lennons’ five-year-old son, Sean, who was with the family nanny, Helen Seaman, when they returned home in the afternoon. According to Chapman, he briefly touched the boy’s hand.
The Lennons spent several hours at the Record Plant studio before returning to the Dakota, at approximately 10:50 pm. Lennon had decided against dining out so he could be home in time to say goodnight to his son, before going on to the Stage Deli restaurant with Ono. Lennon liked to oblige any fans who had been waiting for long periods of time to meet him with autographs or pictures, once saying during an interview with BBC Radio’s Andy Peebles on 5 December 1980: “People come and ask for autographs, or say ‘Hi’, but they don’t bug you”.The Lennons exited their limousine on 72nd Street instead of driving into the more secure courtyard of the Dakota.
Chapman later said he was incensed by Lennon’s “bigger than Jesus” remark, calling it blasphemy, and the songs “God“, and “Imagine“,because of the incongruity between the lyric “Imagine no possessions” and Lennon’s personal wealth. Chapman even sang the song with the altered lyric: “Imagine John Lennon dead.”
At least one source, however, has cast doubt on these details and the motive of the killer, maintaining the murder was part of a conspiracy.
Brilliant mod band Missing Andy to play Westbury – on – Severn Music And Cider Festival only 3 miles away from Littledean Jail this coming weekend along with the equally Legendary chart-topping Forest of Dean band EMF.. why not come visit the jail too !!!!!!!!
After the resounding success of last year’s Inaugural event this year we have decided to host the festival over the bank holiday weekend from 25th-27th August. Set in a lovely rural setting we provide a mix of great music, great Cider (or beer etc), great company and we cater for all ages.
This year we are very proud to announce local music legends EMF as the headline act forSaturday 25th August, who will be joined by othr local favourites The Shyteds and Duke, amongst other great acts.
Sunday 26th will see the incredible Missing Andy headlining. The Essex 5 piece hit the headlines whilst performing on Sky 1’s Must be the Music, which has been followed up with a number of Top 40 hits. They will be supported by top tribute act Kings Ov Leon as well as County Based performer Vince Freeman who has had recent success on BBC1’s The Voice, as well as many other great acts.
In addition to the great line up of acts there will be wide range of great Ciders to try out and a fully stocked bar. A choice of food stalls will be available and there will be stalls and entertainment catering for the whole family.
TRUE CRIME, GANGLAND,MAFIA, MURDERABILIA AND BEYOND…. IT’S ALL HERE AT THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION , LITTLEDEAN JAIL
HERE’S AN INTERACTIVE INSIGHT INTO THE MAD AND VIOLENT WORLD OF MAD FRANKIE FRASER
HERE AT THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION WE FEATURE AND INCLUDE A GREAT MANY GANGLAND FIGURES INCLUDING “MAD” FRANKIE FRASER AS PART OF OUR TRUE CRIME AND GANGLAND COLLECTIONS.
ALSO BELOW ARE SOME MORE INTERACTIVE BACKGROUND VIDEO FOOTAGE RELATING TO THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THIS NOTORIOUS CRIMINAL AND FORMER MEMBER OF THE RICHARDSON GANG WHO RULED THE LONDON GANGLAND SCENE IN THE 1960’S ALONG WITH THEIR RIVALS – THE KRAY TWINS .
ABOVE IS ONE OF THE MANY PERSONALLY SIGNED GANGLAND MEMORABILIA ITEMS ON DISPLAY AT THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION HERE AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL .
Born in Lambeth, south London, Fraser was a deserter during World War II, on several occasions escaping from his barracks. It was during the war that Fraser first became involved in serious crime, with the blackout and rationing, combined with the lack of professional policemen due to conscription, providing ample opportunities for criminal activities. In 1941, he was sent to Borstal for breaking into a Waterloohosiery store and was then given a 15-month prison sentence at Wandsworth Prison for shopbreaking. Such were the criminal opportunities during the war, Fraser later joked in a television interview that he had never forgiven the Germans for surrendering.
After the war, Fraser was involved in a smash-and-grab raid on a jeweller’s for which he received a two-year prison sentence, served largely at Pentonville Prison. It was during this sentence that he was first certified insane and was sent to the Cane Hill Hospital, London, before being released in 1949. During the 1950s his main occupation was as bodyguard to well-known gangster Billy Hill. He took part in more bank robberies and spent more time in prison. He was again certified insane while at Durham Prison and this time sent to Broadmoor. Aware of the punishments for bad behaviour in that institution, Fraser stayed out of trouble and was released in 1955. In 1956, the British mobster Jack Spot and wife Rita were attacked, on Hill’s say-so, by Fraser, Bobby Warren and at least half a dozen other men. Both Fraser and Warren were given seven years for their acts of violence.
It was in the early 1960s that he first met Charlie and Eddie Richardson, members of the notorious Richardson Gang and rivals to the Kray twins. One member of the criminal fraternity was quoted as saying that “Mad Frank joining the Richardson’s Gang was like China getting the atom bomb”. According to Fraser, it was they who helped him avoid arrest for the Great Train Robbery by bribing a policeman. Together they set up the Atlantic Machines fruit machines enterprise, which acted as a front for the criminal activities of the gang. In 1966 Fraser was charged with the murder of Richard Hart who was shot at Mr Smiths’s club in Catford while other members including Jimmy Moody were charged with affray. The witness changed his testimonyand the charges were eventually dropped, though he still received a five year sentence for affray. Fraser has always maintained that, while he fought with Hart, he did not shoot him. He was also implicated in the so-called ‘Torture trial’, in which members of the gang were charged with burning, electrocuting and whipping those found guilty of disloyalty by a kangaroo court. Fraser himself was accused of pulling out the teeth of victims with a pair of pliers. In the trial at the Old Bailey in 1967 he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment.
Fraser’s 42 years served in over 20 different prisons in the UK were often coloured by violence. He was involved in riots and frequently fought with prison officers and fellow inmates as well as attacking various governors. He was one of the ringleaders of the major Parkhurst Prison riot in 1969, spending the following six weeks in the prison hospital, owing to his injuries. Involvement in such activities often led to his sentences being extended. Whilst in Strangeways, Manchester in 1980 Fraser was ‘excused boots’ as he claimed he had problems with his feet so he was allowed to wear slippers. He was released from prison in 1985, where he was met by his son in a Rolls Royce.
In 1991 Fraser was shot in the head from close range in an apparent murder attempt outside the Turnmills Club in Clerkenwell, London. He has always maintained that a policeman was responsible.
He also appeared as East End crime boss Pops Den in the feature film Hard Men, a forerunner of British gangster movies such as Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and had a documentary made of his life Mad Frank which was released as part of the DVD The Ultimate Gangster DVD (2003 Gangster Videos), which featured crime figures Charles Bronson, John McVicar, Paddy Joe Hill, Albert Reading, Dave Courtney, Roy Shaw, Norman Parker, Marilyn Wisbey and axe victim Eric Mason. This programme was also shown on The Crime & Investigation Channel & Biography Channel in the UK and was directed by Liam Galvin.
He now gives gangland tours around London, where he highlights infamous criminal locations such as the Blind Beggar pub. He lives in the Walworth area of London.
Fraser is also a big Arsenal fan, and his grandson Tommy Fraser is a professional footballer, and formerly captain of League Two side Port Vale. According to legend, when he was at Brighton, Tommy was asked by a local reporter if his grandfather ever came to watch him play. “No,” came the reply. “But he reads your reports and he was unhappy you only gave me six out of 10 last week.” Tommy never got less than seven again. Another of Fraser’s grandsons, James Fraser, also spent a short time with Bristol Rovers. Another grandson, Anthony Fraser, was being sought by police in February 2011 for his alleged involvement in alleged £5million cannabis smuggling ring.
London-based production company Classic Media Entertainment has secured the film rights to Mad Frankie’s life. A feature film production is currently in development and the production has Fraser’s endorsement.
A RARE FIND AND A HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT PART OF LITTLEDEAN JAILS HISTORY NOW HERE ON DISPLAY
ORIGINAL SMALL VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTON , FRONT
ORIGINAL VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTON BEARING THE MAKERS TRADEMARK NAME “CHADWIN AND SONS BIRMINGHAM ” BACK
ORIGINAL LARGE AND SMALL VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTONS , REAR
ORIGINAL LARGE AND SMALL VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTONS , FRONT
ORIGINAL LARGE VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTONS , REAR
ORIGINAL VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S ) LITTLE DEAN PRISON TUNIC BUTTON , FRONT
EARLY VICTORIAN (CIRCA 1850’S) PRISON WARDEN/GUARD TUNIC BUTTONS AS WERE ATTACHED TO THE TUNIC AND WORN HERE AT THE THEN CALLED ” LITTLE DEAN PRISON ” AS CLEARLY INSCRIBED HERE ON THE FRONT OF THE BUTTON …COMPLETE WITH THE VICTORIAN CROWN EMBLEM , ON REVERSE STAMPED WITH THE BUTTON MAKERS NAME …. CHADWIN & SONS BIRMINGHAM .
Probably insignificant to most visitors …. however I personally treasure these historic and rare original memorabilia items which have recently been, discovered, sourced and acquired for permanent display here .
Intriguingly these early Victorian Prison Warden/Guard tunic buttons are clearly inscribed LITTLE DEAN (AS TWO WORDS) WITH PRISON BENEATH (INSTEAD OF GAOL ) … as opposed to it’s early title as having been “Littledean Gaol”.
Littledean Gaol was built during the Georgian Period in 1791 at the same time and by the same architect as Northleach Prison and Horsley Prison . Horsley Prison having long since been demolished .
Below : Original canvas type early Victorian straight jacket complete with leather straps , as was found in the attic of Littledean Jail during it’s renovation work back in 1986.
This was more than likely used during the Jail’s former use as a “House of Correction” as well as possibly during it’s time as a Victorian Jail ….. In any event a great historic piece here on display at the jail .
ORIGINAL VICTIORAN STRAIGHT JACKET THAT WAS FOUND IN LITTLEDEAN JAIL’S ATTIC SPACE BY BUILDERS DURING RENOVATION WORK BACK IN 1986 AND SUBSEQUENTLY DONATED TO THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION FOR PERMANENT DISPLAY HERE AT THE JAIL
Here is a brief pictorial history of Littledean Jail from Victorian times to present day …..
A VERY EARLY POSTCARD IMAGE OF LITTLEDEAN GAOL, WHEN IT WAS USED AS A “HOUSE OF CORRECTION “.
About Littledean Jail – Alcatraz of the Forest…
Standing at the gateway to the Royal Forest of Dean, this former House of Correction – Littledean Jail was designed and built by the Pioneer of Prison Reform – Sir George Onesiphorous Paul and leading Prison Architect of his day – William Blackburn. As a result of the sudden death of Blackburn it was completed under the supervision of his new brother-in-law, architect William Hobson in 1791.
This remarkable Grade II* listed building was built as the most up-to-date, revolutionary House of Correction of its time, and was later seen as the Government’s role model for London’s Pentonville Prison and taken across the seas for the world famous Philadelphian Cherry Hill Penitentiary System in America. It was built for the miserly sum of £1,650. The building work was started in 1788 by Gabriel Rogers, who went bankrupt as a result of not being able to complete the work at such low costs. London Builder J. Fentiman was brought in to finish the job.
Behind the austere gatehouse entrance, the prison, with it’s formidable sandstone façade remains much as it was when first built. Steeped in history and infamy, its awesome appearance provides a stark reminder of the hard labour and craftsmanship needed to build this architecturally important jailhouse.
EARLY VICTORIAN PRISON WARDEN/GUARD TUNIC BUTTON
Probably insignificant to visitors …. however I love this item which has been recently discovered and acquired for display here . Intriguingly this early Victorian Prison Warden/Guard tunic button is worded LITTLE DEAN (AS TWO WORDS) WITH PRISON BENEATH (INSTEAD OF GAOL ) … as opposed to it’s early title as having been “Littledean Gaol”.
Littledean Jail – ‘The Crime Through Time Collection’
Previously set up and housed at a former police station and courthouse at Nicholson House, Newent in Gloucestershire between 1998 – 2003. It had soon outgrown its previous home and as a result of this has been relocated lock, stock and barrel to its much larger home, here at Littledean Jail.
Over the years its owner Andy Jones has become a (some say) controversial and distinguished county personality, with his much-publicised battles with Tewkesbury Borough and Forest of Dean Council planning officers. His ‘Crime Through Time Collection’ is of worldwide interest and is in itself a magnet for publicity… being regularly covered in newspapers, magazines and TV programmes around the globe.
Despite much publicised threats of enforcement, imprisonment and boycotting actions imposed upon the owner over some two decades or more… his collection has been highly acclaimed as being one of the most unorthodox, interesting and historically significant of its kind, providing a unique niche in the Tourism Market place.
Littledean Jail Admission Prices 2012:
Price includes admission to the Quadrophenia Collection.
Children (aged 8 – 16): £4.95
Children under 8: FREE
If you’re 100 years young then admission is FREE!
How to AVOID Littledean Jail!
When you approach Littledean, the ‘Gateway to the Forest of Dean’,
follow the brown tourist signs.
Cars can be accommodated at the entrance to the jail whilst COACHES should simply use the Littledean village bus stops as ‘drop off points’. These are situated approximately 80 metres from the entrance to the jail on either side of the road.
Escape from Littledean Jail!
Gloucester is just 20 minutes from the Jail, but if you want to get further away, Bristol, Cheltenham, Hereford and Cardiff are about 40 minutes. Birmingham is a round hour, whilst London is only just under 3 hours away – but who would want to go there!
Open from April 1st to October 31st
Day visits are only allowed from 10am to 5pm (last entry 3.45pm)
Visiting Orders are not necessary!
Please kindly note that we are only OPEN from Thursdays to Sundays & Bank Holiday’s (or at other times solely at The Jailers discretion).
Occasionally special Corporate, Mystery Tours and Evening Visits for groups of 20 or more can be arranged, but only by kind permission from The Jailer (He’s only a little scary!)
Schools and College visits are also welcome, but must be under strict supervision, as
The Jailer has been known to lock trouble makers in the spare cells if compromised!
ABOVE ARE A FEW IMAGES OF LITTLEDEAN JAIL AS IT IS NOW, BOTH OUTSIDE AND IN.