Between July 1966 and December 1970 my wife and I lived at the police house at 101 Cappell Lane, Stanstead Abbotts, next door to Alan Richardson. Alan and I shared a 200cc Velocette “noddy” so worked opposite shifts and covered the Stanstead and Great Amwell area. The office, attached to our house, was equipped with a table and two chairs, a telephone switchboard (“Stanstead Abbotts 43” left permanently in a position to ring in both houses) and a hand cranked air raid siren which had to be tested occasionally. Almost all visitors came to our door as we had the conspicuous POLICE sign on the office door.
In April 1967 part of the front garden was taken to provide a footpath along the road. About the same time outstations were discontinued and, together with Tony Elam from Hunsdon and Jim Warner from Wadesmill, the four of us formed the Ware Rural Beat, surrendering our three noddy bikes for a Vauxhall Viva panda car which was operated for 24 hours a day. Although the sign was removed from the office door and the telephone number made ex-directory, this made no difference whatsoever to the locals : I was frequently disturbed when trying to sleep during the day when working nights.
In December 1970 I transferred to the Somerset and Bath Constabulary (later the Avon and Somerset Constabulary) and continued to serve there until retirement in June 1992.