Celebrating 50 years

Tuesday, 04 November, 2014


Police in Bury St Edmunds hosted a special event at the beginning of October, to celebrate 50 years since the Police Station opened.

The building in Raingate Street was officially opened on 9 October 1964 by Sir Charles Cunningham, Permanent Under Secretary of State at the Home Office, as the new force and divisional headquarters for the former West Suffolk Constabulary.

To celebrate this occasion former police officers and employees who were based at the station, including several ex-divisional commanders, were invited to attend an event to commemorate the opening 50 years to the day, including some of the people who were present at the original opening.

There were guided tours of the building, the chance to view police memorabilia and photographs covering all the decades the building has been in use, and also a DVD showing of the original opening.

The event provided former employees the opportunity to reminisce, see how the building has changed, meet with old friends and colleagues and compare ‘pocket note books’ with staff from difference eras, including those presently working for Suffolk Constabulary.

Chief Superintendent Jon Brighton, County Policing Commander, who gave the welcoming address at the event, said: “As someone who first came to Bury Police Station 30-years-ago at the beginning of my career, I am delighted to have been able to take part in the anniversary

“I had initially started my service at Lowestoft Police Station, which at the time was a relatively new building, so as Bury Station had been built 20-years previously at that point, I thought it was old then! I am pleased to see the station is still going strong as the centre of policing in the west of the county.

“The walls of this building have a great many stories to tell and I’m sure the majority of those who spent part, or in some cases all, of their service based here will have an affection and affinity for it. I certainly have fond memories of my time spent based here and it has been wonderful seeing staff past and present spanning 50 years come together to celebrate this occasion.”

John Cullum, former Deputy Chief Constable of Suffolk Constabulary who retired in 2000, added: “I started working in this building in August 1964 whilst the carpenters were putting the final touches to it and was a 16-year-old cadet in the guard of honour at the official opening."

“I spent some of the happiest days of my working life here and in fact it is where I met my wife. This event has been a brilliant opportunity to re-live past experiences and meet with old colleagues and it has been really interesting to compare the policing world of fifty years ago with today.”

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