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Newspaper obituary report for Ex Cannon Row Inspector John Edward Sexton

Send Alpha Delta Plus your memories and pictures etc.of time spent at 'BP'.


Recent email received from Stuart Sexton Grandson of Ex 'AD' Inspector John Edward Sexton (first Police Officer to receive the MBE). 

I have just seen your web page on Buckingham Palace.
It may or may not be of interest to you that my grandfather, John Edward SEXTON, who I never met, was the Inspector in charge at Buckingham Palace during the 20's and 30's I think.  There was a section house in the Palace where my dad was brought up prior to the war.  I don't know why but this experience ensured my father never did, or want to, join the Force.  I sort of corrected the balance by joining the Bristol Constabualry.
My grandfather was the first Metropolitan Police Officer to be awarded the MBE and I have the newspaper cutting
which gives the details.
Unfortunately I lost a letter from the old Queen Mother thanking him and his men for the way they policed either her wedding or her husband's coronation.  It told him not to worry about the window which did not spoil a lovely day.  I found out from my dad that grandfather had got them into a coach, put a rug over their knees and asked if they wanted the window closed.  When she said yes he pulled it up with such force it shattered.
Can you imagine?  He must have been mortified but as she came accross for the rest of her life, she was lovely about it.  Oh how I regret losing that letter.
I came to London many years ago trying to offer his medals from the Crimean War and First WW together with the MBE, press cutting and some photos but was met with complete indifference which seemed a shame to me as it was a bit of history but I suppose I am biased. 
I do have the oak chair he was presented with when he retired which is much admired by all (including antique dealers).
My apologies if this is not appropriate to your website".
Yours sincerely
Stuart Sexton

email:  stusexton@hotmail.com



Here are a couple of stories re life at 'BP' in the 1960's from Ex 'A' PC Chris Barker.

Night duty at the Con Hill side gate inside 'BP'. Probably after 0200. Silence, apart from traffic away from West End. Yours truly with multi-handled Labrador (I was a multi-handler for 2 years @ 'BP'). Dog growls, hackles rise, pulls very hard on lead, difficulty in restraining him. Obviously someone over Con Hill wall and in bushes! No PR in those days, nearest phone several feet away inside garden gate. DECISION: let dog off lead, dash for phone and put up a, 'Suspects on' shout! No sooner done, hear sounds of Area cars various, no Alpha 1 in those days, had to use Charlie 1 & 2 and probably Bravo R/T covering 'BG'( border was t'other side of Grosvenor Place) and think, 'wonder if that's to do with me' - it was! See night duty running around from Terrace with PS Matthew TOPHAM, just at the same time as dog emerges from bushes looking very, very pleased who drops a duck from his jaws!!! I probably was dumbstruck! What to do next as everyone descends on me. Old Matt, he very wise northerner, 'Get bloody duck away from here, lad'. Well, we were under the Royal bedchamber windows! Over the Con Hill wall it went! It was a 'deceased' duck, it had certainly 'fallen off its perch', etc. All cars cancelled, false alarm!


Next night, parading in Police Lodge, surprise, surprise, Resident Inspector (not sure if Sid BARCHARD was there then) came in. 'Anyone know anything about a missing Royal duck?' CHORUS of 'No sirs' from assembled N/D. Apparently TRHs Charles & Anne had taken to the nesting couple of ducks and apparently most unhappy to find unattended nest AND eggs! Things had a nasty habit of filtering down from on high, in more ways than one there!

Chris Barker
Modify The Text 2

Another Memory of Duty At Buckingham Palace

From Ex PC 331'A'/159441 Colin Davies.


I was assigned to BP for 6 months in 1972 through Spring and the Summer.
As usual after the last of the summer Garden Parties, I was working early turn 0600 to 1400.  I left the Lodge at Electricians Gate and stood looking at the carnage of the final garden party of the season, what a mess.  I looked at my feet and saw a Daily Mirror still in good shape. I picked it up and walked to the shelter (from what?) of one of the large catering tents, I leaned against one of its poles and began reading the Daily Mirror. After about 3 or 4 minutes I hear the scrunchy sound of someone walking on gravel.

I look up and, YES just my luck, I thought, it was HRH QE2 and several of her Corgis, looking at ME !
In a move that came without thought, I threw up a salute with my right hand and folded the Daily Mirror and slid it behind my left leg.  I managed to utter "Good morning Ma'am.  HRH  replied in kind. I was thinking that the duty sergeant would be getting a phone call and I was a day short of getting the sack, or worse!
HRH didn't smile but I could tell that she knew that I knew that she knew, I had made a FAUX PAS of great magnitude, my legs were shaking but I maintained my equilibrium.  I got a nod and HRH left, returning from whence she came, towards her breakfast room that looked out over the gardens.
I could tell that she knew that I knew that she knew!


Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department

The Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department (RDPD) is a branch of the London Metropolitan Police.

The security, as distinct from the ceremonial bodyguards or military protection, of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom and of members of the British Royal Family is entrusted to the Metropolitan Police. As currently organised, the Assistant Commissioner, Specialist Operations, has overall control. He exercises this through the Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Security and Protection. This DAC controls the Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department, Aviation Security (SO18), and Special Branch (SO12). The Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department has primary responsibility for the safety of the Sovereign and the Royal Family and of visiting overseas VIPs and their accredited representatives in the United Kingdom.

The Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department was created on 1 September 1983 on the merger of the Royalty Protection Department and the Diplomatic Protection Group (DPG). Initially in A (Administration) Department, since 1985 it has been in the Specialist Operations Department. It was organised into the Royalty Protection Division (SO14), Royal Palaces Division (SO15), and Diplomatic Protection Group (SO16). It assumed responsibility for the security of the Palace of Westminster, where Parliament sits, in 1991 - this is policed by the Palace of Westminster Division (SO17). SO15 joined SO14 in 1995, and the Department is now divided into SO14(1) (static armed protection), SO14(2) (armed personal protection), and the Special Escort Group (SEG).

The Royalty Protection Division was created in 1982 from the Royalty Protection Squad (A1), itself created in the late 1970s from the Public Order Branch (A8) and the police of A District guarding the neighbourhood of Buckingham Palace. In late 1982 police guarding other royal residences in London (Kensington Palace, St James's Palace, Clarence House) and police responsible for Windsor Castle were added, along with the Royalty Protection Officers. The head of this part of the Department is the Queen's Police Officer. The Senior Personal Protection Officer to the Prince of Wales is a Superintendent while most Personal Protection Officers are Inspectors or Sergeants.

The Royalty Protection Squad, in A Department, was based at Cannon Row police station under the Queen's Police Officer. It was responsible for the protection of The Queen at public functions at Buckingham Palace, and all times when she was outside the Palace. The Queen's Police Officer also supervised the personal protection of all members of the Royal Family, although Royalty Protection Officers were not in the squad. The Queen's Police Officer commanded the police guarding the interior of the Palace and its grounds, through the Staff Officer.

The Queen's Police Officer was the descendant of the police first appointed for royal security in 1792. In that year Bow Street Runners, who were detectives appointed by the Magistrates of Bow Street court, were assigned to provide plain-clothes protection. In 1838 they were replaced by an Inspector of Police of the newly created Metropolitan Police, who was the direct ancestor of the Royalty Protection Squad. Special Branch took over some aspects of the role in 1883, but was largely superseded before the Second World War.

The Public Order Branch (A8) was formerly also responsible for royal security, particularly during ceremonial events, as was the Special Patrol Group (A9).

The Palace of Holyroodhouse and Balmoral Castle in Scotland are the responsibility of the Department when they are in royal use, and the Department also liaises closely with the Chief Constables responsible for any royal residence outside London.

The current head of the Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department is Commander the Earl of Rosslyn (known professionally as "Peter Loughborough"), who was appointed in 2003 and is the only peer in the United Kingdom who is a serving policeman.

The current head of Royalty Protection (SO14) is Chief Superintendent Stephen Grainger. One recent predecessor was Chief Superintendent James Beaton, GC CVO, who held office 1983-92. He received the George Cross for protecting Princess Anne against a crazed attacker in 1974.