Piece of Nottingham’s policing history goes on display in Byron House

 

A historic Victorian wand (baton), used by a local police officer in the 1800’s is heading back to its official home.

The Sheriff of Nottingham, Councillor Glyn Jenkins, will return a historic symbol of office to #Byron House in the city.

A tipstaff – the traditional rod of authority of a police officer – dating from 1836 will go on display in Nottingham’s Byron House from Tuesday. The Sheriff will formally handover the tipstaff to the Civic Guard otherwise known as his “Posse Comitatus” on Tuesday 10 October 2017.

The wand belonged to Nottingham police officer Robert Lineker, who became a police constable in 1836 and went on to later become the governor of the gaol (jail) at Weekday Cross.

The tipstaff is engraved with the officers’ name – R Lineker, and the police station that he was based at ‘Smithy Row Police Office’.

1836 was a significant year – The Nottingham Reform Act was passed and a police force was set up in the city for the first time. The new Nottingham Borough Police started to operate in 1836 and consisted of fifteen police officers supported by a group of watchmen.

The tipstaff is the precursor to a police officer’s truncheon or baton – used for protection, and as a means to serve warrants.

The tipstaff has been in the collection of Brewhouse Yard museum and will now be on display at Nottingham’s Central Police Station, Byron House.

Assistant Chief Constable Stu Prior said: “We’re really pleased to be in possession of this special piece of Nottingham’s policing history. It links us back to a time when policing was just developing and reminds us how far we’ve come. It will take pride of place on display here and we hope that staff and visitors will stop to appreciate it.”

Maria Richards, Curator of Community History and World Cultures for Nottingham City Museums and Galleries explains the history of the tipstaff – “The tipstaff has been in our collections since 1990 – it’s important to us to showcase items with a Nottingham connection. We’re delighted to be loaning it to Byron House for five years.”

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