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Ystradgynlais
Crime and punishment
 
  Policing the Upper Swansea Valley 1  
 

Before the creation of a trained police force, law and order was upheld by parish constables who were local people doing the job for a year. They would have no training and often did not want to do it.
At the beginning of Queen Victoria's reign the government passed an Act to allow counties like Breconshire to set up a County Constabulary or police force. Montgomeryshire set up such a force soon after (see the pages on Constable Jones' journal), but Breconshire did not. Instead the county appointed a number of paid Superintendent Constables to oversee the local parish constables and give them support.

In autumn 1850 orders were made by the magistrates for giving these Superintendent Constables a proper uniform.
The entry from the records below list what clothing they should have, and the picture (right) shows what they may have looked like.

   
 

1 Blue uniform, Frock coat, Brass Buttons and worsted
emboidered collar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40/- (£2)
1 Pair Superfine Trousers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18/6 (82p)
1 Superfine Hat . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14/6 (72p)
1 Silk Stock [a cravat worn round the neck like a tie] . 2/6 (12p)
1 Police cape as Metro Police [London]. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5/- (25p)

More on police in the Upper Swansea Valley...

 
 

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