How Policing Has Changed (5)

Our little book ‘One In For D & D’ explores more than 500 slang words, phrases and abbreviations used in the West Midlands by officers from the 1970s onward. Following the creation of the West Midlands Police in 1974, due to a number of amalgamations, the Force was known at one stage as the ‘Force of a thousand macs’ due to the sheer variety of raincoats worn. In the early 70s some officers were still even wearing capes which were extremely warm but very heavy and cumbersome. Three of their unofficial uses were being able to walk around with your hands in your pockets without being seen, holding your warm fish and chips wrapped in paper underneath without being seen, and occasionally using the cape

to swing at unruly potential prisoners to knock them off balance. (Photo courtesy of the ever helpful Deb Menzel – an icon when it comes to preserving West Midlands Police History)

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