20. BATTERSEA POLICE STATION
The first records relating to situating a Police station in Battersea came in 1858, when it was reported that a piece of land near the Castle public house was available and suitable. In February 1859 the Metropolitan Police Surveyor recommended the purchase of the freehold land for £300, and subsequently a new station was erected on the site.
Named Battersea Bridge Road Station, it was taken into service by V’ Division in January 1861.
By 1864 the station strength was four sergeants and 20 constables. Of the four sergeants, two supervised the day duty shift while the remaining two were responsible for the night duty. Battersea was split into two sections, and had six day and 14 night beats.
By 1901 the station was in such disrepair that the drains would overflow and flood the basement whenever there was a downpour or if the Thames flooded, causing sewerage to seep in. This led to a number of officers contracting diphtheria and typhoid fever. The gas lamps were also criticised, as many were faulty and some were dangerous.
As a result a new, much larger station was built on the site in 1907, and remained in use until 2013, when it was vacated and put up for sale. In January 2014 it was sold for development for £6M.
Information taken from the new book BEHIND THE BLUE LAMP. Click here to learn more.