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Modern Times: 1950s to The Present Day

Everyday Life

Law and Order

By Alistair Dinsmor

Strathclyde Police HQ Since the 1950s, the many social and physical changes to Glasgow have been influential on the policing of the City. The movement of hundreds of families from the city slums to the newly built "schemes" in the suburbs was to have the greatest effect on law and order in the latter half of the 20th Century. The response of the Glasgow Police to these new challenges included modifying their policing methods by the introduction of wooden huts as temporary police offices and motor scooter patrols. Later, the establishment of permanent police offices and motor patrols would confirm the permanence of the police presence and their desire to be part of the community.

Through the 1960s and 70s, technology became important to the success of Glasgow Police. Personal radios for officers and the motorcar became essential for keeping up with modern criminals. As a response to travelling criminals, the Regional Crime Squad was set up in the late 1950s. Detectives from Glasgow and the surrounding counties worked together utilising their collective knowledge of their areas and of local criminals.

In 1975, local government reform brought the end of Glasgow Police as a separate organisation. Amalgamation with its surrounding county police forces resulted in a new police force, Strathclyde Police, the second largest police force in Britain. With the amalgamation came more advanced technology in the form of computers, a police helicopter and police communications. This pattern of improvement continues today.

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