Exhaustively researched account … fascinating' Brian Paddick, Guardian.
Informative jaunt through the history of the modern bobby … worth reading' Daily Telegraph.
A thoroughly learned, clear-eyed and engaging read' Sunday Times.
The doyen of police history has produced a well-informed, thoughtful account of the British police over some 200 years that is a pleasure to read' BBC History Magazine.
From the Back Cover
The name 'Bobby' comes from Sir Robert Peel who, as home secretary, oversaw the creation of the Metropolitan Police in 1829. In spite of his position as a national institution and his appeal as a solution to present-day concerns about law and order, the social history of the Bobby has rarely been explored. Yet his story (and since the beginning of the twentieth century it is also her story) is as exciting as that of his military cousin, Tommy Atkins. The period covered by The Great British Bobby has seen massive economic, social and political change in Britain. The policing institution has shifted significantly in tandem, from having its primary relationship directly with the local community, to becoming an instrument of the central state with, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, targets set and regulated for the good of what politicians and policing professionals consider as the national community.