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PC George Clough British Transport Police, Rail House, Liverpool

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bill1953

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PC George Clough pictured in the new BTP control room, Rail House, Lime Street Station, Liverpool May 1976 just after the move from the ground floor of the old North Western Hotel on the corner of LimeSt/Lord Nelson St (now the lounge of Wetherspoons). George had joined the British Transport Commission police after WW2 in which he served with the 1st Batt. Grenadier Guards. He witnessed Lance Corporal Harry Nicholls win his VC and was one of the men who were allowed to escape through his brave action May 1940. He told me 'I saw bullets whizzing all around him and bits of flesh flying off! I thought he was a goner!' .George served with the BTP until the late 70s. The control room at that time was considered to be the height of technology. Notice various books for writing of messages and information. Sorry about the imperfections there is some damage to the photograph.
 

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WesternLancer

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PC George Clough pictured in the new BTP control room, Rail House, Lime Street Station, Liverpool May 1976 just after the move from the ground floor of the old North Western Hotel on the corner of LimeSt/Lord Nelson St (now the lounge of Wetherspoons). George had joined the British Transport Commission police after WW2 in which he served with the 1st Batt. Grenadier Guards. He witnessed Lance Corporal Harry Nicholls win his VC and was one of the men who were allowed to escape through his brave action May 1940. He told me 'I saw bullets whizzing all around him and bits of flesh flying off! I thought he was a goner!' .George served with the BTP until the late 70s. The control room at that time was considered to be the height of technology. Notice various books for writing of messages and information. Sorry about the imperfections there is some damage to the photograph.
Interesting pic - yes I bet that desk was the cutting edge of tech at the time, or thought to be!
 

Grumpy Git

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Interesting pic - yes I bet that desk was the cutting edge of tech at the time, or thought to be!

I was involved in the design and manufacture of a large control desk for a "blue chip" client in the late eighties. Apart from a pushbutton telephone, it wasn't much different to that one in the above photograph. It's only in the last 20-odd years where technology has really changed.
 

bill1953

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When we were given a tour of the new premises in Rail House prior to moving across from the old office we just stood in total awe amazed at the space age technology of that desk! Of course no computers readily available then so poor George has a cluster of books to record information in. The previous control room in what is now Wetherspoons lounge was more basic but to me at such a young age, very impressive. It had a telephone for general calls, a red one as a hotline to BR control room for incidents involving rail transport etc, a radio receiver/transmitter and a Telex machine. on one occasion an officer was struggling with a member of the public on Lime Street concourse and dropped his radio transmitter on the ground. At that time police radios were in two parts, receiver clipped to your lapel and transmitter carried in your pocket. A young scally walking past with his mates noted it lying on the ground and grabbed in. We were then subjected to abusive radio calls for some time until the rechargeable battery died. (Funny to think that lad would be over 60 now and probably complaining about young scallies!). One sergeant enraged at listening to the abuse grabbed the control room transmitting mike and shouted 'We have traced your location and will be arresting you in the next few minutes!!' He banged it down saying that would have them quaking in their boots. Then someone quietly pointed out that they only had the transmitter not the receiver as well. I believe that our old office had been the billiards room of the North Western Hotel. I am not sure at what stage it had become a police office but some have told me that it was during WW2 while others stated post war. We also had some other rooms upstairs and also over in Rail House where the admin, CID, Chief Inspector etc lived. We left in early 1976 and I am conscious that there will be a diminishing number of people left alive who remember the layout of the Wetherspoons part so for those who may be interested I will try to describe it with the aid of the pics below. The doorway on the left led to a passage which extended to the Lord Nelson St door opposite (on the right of the first pic) dividing the area in two. All the rooms had partition walls not full height and we could see the ornate ceiling above which was all painted a dull cream colour then. Past the doorway on the left and reaching to halfway across the fireplace was the report writing and interview room (a prisoner being interviewed tried to escape by climbing up the fireplace chimney but was caught and pulled back) beyond that moving from the other half of the fireplace to the Lime st window was the control room. Alongside that and occupying the Lime St/Lord Nelson St corner was a small office for the inspector the lord Nelson St corner window of which bore the marks of a shotgun blast fired from outside by a disgruntled criminal in the 1960s. Those marks remained until Wetherspoons replaced the windows a few year back. Coming up Lord Nelson St from the corner was a small office for the sergeant and then a public desk area. At the end overlooking the Lord Nelson St taxi rank there was a locker room on the left and a first aid room on the right. I remember escorting a prisoner into the public desk area. He was a professional gentleman complete with pin stripe trousers and briefcase who unfortunately had visited two many pubs before heading home to West Kirby. Calmer after being arrested he glanced up at the ceiling and noticing that and the wood paneling which was painted over in those days, he said 'Do you know old chap this place would make a damn fine pub!' He was not wrong and visiting there over forty years later and looking at the ceiling I had to agree with him.
 

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