Thursday, January 20, 2005


Bent Coppers !

We lived in a very nice police house. This was quite an imposing building, nicely detached on its own plot. Its Office attached,and a very nice double garage so that the van could go in one side and you could put your own car in the other. Of course, being TVP the van wouldn’t fit as the blue light on top was too tall to go under the swing up door. This meant that unless you had two cars, unlikely on police wages ! one of the garages would be going spare. The guy who owned the garage on the other corner was a friend – He was a useful sort of chap, he bought and sold cars at auction and could always be relied on if cheap reliable transport was needed. His tea pot was always full and you could keep an eye on all sorts from the back room of the garage. Anyway, another of my friends on the new estate was having problems with kids damaging a very nice new catamaran he had bought a really upmarket Hobie Cat which he kept on a trailer in his drive. He knew I sailed (both sailboards and dinghies) and had a large garden in the police house. So he asked me if I would look after the Cat as no one would damage it in the garden of the police house – the caveat being that I could use it anytime I wanted to. This worked out nicely as I could never afford a beast like that. So, Mike, the garage owner also did “Weddings, Airport runs, and funeral limo” on the side and had a very nice Rolls Royce for this. He had to keep this in a compound at the back of the garage. This was a wired off bit locked with a padlock and chain and not very secure. He noticed the free garage, and the fact that I had Dave’s Catamaran in the garden, and asked me if he could put his Roller under cover in my spare garage.
So, a bit cheekily, I said that he could under the same conditions as Dave’s Cat. He didn’t even flinch – Any time you want to use it that’s fine with me – I’ll even put petrol in it (11mph) and you can use it on the garage insurance as I have to employ a bloke to drive it for weddings etc. The upshot being there’s this great thing sticking out of the garage as it was a bit long and the door kept blowing up as it would not quite click on to the lock. Next thing I know I get a phone call from someone I knew at HQ telling me to watch my back as I’m being investigated for being “bent”. Strange, that’s usually for the old time ex metpol CID not village bobbies. Sure enough comes the call in to the main police station. In I go, ushered in to the Inspector’s office to “cool my heels” – then comes the Spanish Inquisition ! Insp ***** and Sgt !!!!! from Complaints and Discipline.
“We’ve had a complaint from one of your parishioners that you must either have a private income that we don’t know about, or you’re on the take “ “I must caution you that etc etc etc “
“wot”, says I, confused ? “No doubt you have checked my bank account and know that until pay day next week I am about £20 overdrawn”
“Exactly”, “How can you afford expensive cars, and boats then ??”
“Wot”, says I, in another stunning verbal riposte – “I’ve got a 10 year old Volvo estate, in dire need of a full service” and a 5 year old caravan which is paid for”
A Great light suddenly dawns - With some fast talking and the general belief that no one could be that stupid I manage to convince them that all is above board, couple of phone calls and two statements of ownership and the wheels stuck back on to the wagon.
It would appear that some sticky beaking, nosy b*****d on the patch had seen said car and boat in my garden and leapt to the conclusion that their village bobby was some sort of bent copper, like on the TV ! I ask you, deep in rural Oxfordshire (mind you the Krogers Lived in Great Barrington) just a couple of villages down the road. Just as a final sort of cherry on top. I only used the Roller once, just too sort of try it out and say that I had driven one. Drove she who must be obeyed into the middle of Oxford. Parked on the double yellow lines right outside the Randolph Hotel, the doorman in waistcoat and top hat no less – opened the doors and ushered us in. Went in to bar, had an orange juice and watched to see if Morse would come in (he didn’t) went back out a half hour later. The doorman ushered us in to car and we drove off. Its true, the power of a Roller negates all parking wardens !!!
He sold the car a while later, and we got a new van with a lower, badge bar type blue light instead of the blue “tit”
On the top. This fitted in to the garage. I had a happy summer sailing the Cat, as Dave admitted he had only bought it to impress his new partner and was scared of sailing it as it was a bit of a beast – you could get the damned thing up to about 30 knots in a good wind and it would literally tow a water skier behind it ! He sold it in the autumn – pity, and life returned to normal in the village. I would still like to know who “informed” on me.
There were some shifty looks in the pub for a few weeks but I never did find out !
Mornin all

A friend of mine moved from London to Northumberland a few eons ago :-) - This was at the time when a house in London would sell for much more than it was worth in the rest of the country.
As he had lived there almost all his life he had no mortgage to speak of, and on selling the house could spend almost all the money on his new gaff.
He transferred to Northumbria Police, bought a house next door to the Chief Constable and within a few weeks was being investigated for being "bent". It was the Chief who bubbled him though, didn't like the woody living next door :-)
It does happen - No one believes you when you tell them!
The "Guvners" !! think that everyone is bent and police constables are the worst of the lot !! - Too much watching the Sweeny I'd say !
I have an ex-boyfriend who used to own a sailboat. He said that the two best days of his life were 1) the day he bought the boat, and 2) the day he sold it. As he lived in an apartment, he had to pay marina fees to keep it...
He should have come and asked me to store it for him then - that was a great summer sailing the Cat - used to trailer it down to Poole harbour it was a real "Kick Ass" 22ft Cat with a trampoline deck and trapeze harness - much more fun than the sailboard but just as wet ! - Ah well we were young then
I'm not certain, Mog, but I think the airfare from Kentucky to GB to use the thing would've been more than the marina fees... :^)
Apparently a 'Trojan' has good traffic warden negating powers as well. An ex-firearms chum of mine told the story of how once he and his team were waiting for some bad lads to do something naughty and were stacked up in the back of a plain Transit waiting for the go. Up wanders a traffic warden and bimbles around to the back of the van to see if it is 1/8 mm over the double yellows. Just as he arrives the team gets the go. Traffic warden is flattened by the doors flying open and is lying stunned as half a dozen rather heavily armed men in black leap over him. So, in the absence of a Rolls Royce and needing to park somewhere you shouldn't, get a few bored firearms lads and a transit and you will never have to worry about traffic wardens again.
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