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Glimpse into a 1950s police station

Humberside Police is celebrating 60 years since the opening of Grimsby's Victoria Street Police Station which was unveiled on September 19, 1957. 

Back then it was the County Borough of Grimsby’s Police Headquarters and was officially opened by then Home Secretary Richard ‘Rab’ Butler.

Officers moved from their base at Grimsby Town Hall into the new building on September 20 under the leadership of Chief Constable Mr C. E. Butler Esq. OBE. 

The base, which took three years to build, cost £158,767 – the equivalent of about £3million in today’s money. In comparison, Lancashire Police recently unveiled plans to build a new £23 million station in Blackpool.

It was the same year that Harold Macmillan was Prime Minister, John Lennon and Paul McCartney first met, Paul Anka was at Number One in the charts with ‘Diana’, television personality Stephen Fry was born and actor Humphrey Bogart died. 

An official booklet from the time gives the total amount of sergeants and constables as 168. Six of those were women. There were 195 special officers.

The total cost of police services for the year (1957-58) came to £231,000 - less than the average price of a house in the UK in 2017. 

The two storey main building has a total floor area of 35,000 sq. ft. It was built with 14 cells for men, and six for women as well as all the modern provisions, communications, and equipment that was required for policing in the 1950s. 

Chief Supt Christine Wilson and officers cut a cake to mark the anniversary alongside retired PC Len Rayner, 86, who worked at the station as a young officer when it first opened. 

Published 20 Sep 2017

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