Margaret Thatcher became prime minister of England in 1979 and after getting power she decided to implement the recommendations Edmund Davies committee. According to the recommendations of this committee a heavy increment in the salary of police force was given, in some cases it was approx fifty percent. New Conscriptions were done on a large scale and newly recruited police force was well equipped with arms and with new powers. According to Thatcher, the whole exercise was done to deal with the crime within the country in case of any war with any external force and to deal with other emergency situations. Though some critics have a different version of story, according to them the whole exercise was to utilize the police force for own political purpose and to pacify the opponents.
After this installment a prominent change was observed in the working of police, the harmonious relation between the police and public was affected. The new unsympathetic face of police force was seen in the 1984 Minor’s strike and in 1985 Battle of the Beanfield. In minor’s strike police used the power that was given to the force by Thatcher, the force controlled the minor’s strike after a long hassle though it painted a bad image of police among people. The faith and harmony that was present between the police and people was hampered. In the Battle of the Beanfield Police force used the same method to control people by using force at large scale. Both the events were handled forcefully as per the instruction and expectation of their architect, the prime minister. The working of police was started gaining dense criticism by political parties, society and the press and the police force was segregated from the public as probably was designed by the Thatcher..
On the other hand Police officials deny allegations of brutality and any kind of political interference. Brian Mackenzie, a senior police official during minor’s strike and now Lord Mackenzie of Framwellgate says “the police force was just doing the duty, trying to maintain law and orders. This is wrong that we were working as boot boys of Margaret Thatcher, none of us was politically influenced”.
The decade of 80 was named as Thatcher’s years due to her powerful working style, the motive behind empowering the police force was politically motivated and she used police force for her own political purposes also. However in the long term the force was used for its actual purpose .
Cahill, G., 2010. Theguardian. [Online] Available at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/sep/15/police-cuts-common-sense [Accessed 19 October 2011].
Ellis, A., 2010. Thinking Strategically. [Online] Available at: http://thinkstrat.wordpress.com/2010/08/07/margaret-thatcher-strategy-and-the-use-of-force/ [Accessed 19 October 2011].
Gabb, S., 2009. Sean Gabb. [Online] Available at: http://www.seangabb.co.uk/?q=node/455 [Accessed 19 October 2011].
Johnston, P., 2007. The Telegraph. [Online] Available at: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/philipjohnston/3674891/Thatcher_kept_the_police_onside/ [Accessed 19 October 2011].
King, J., 2009. Conscious Ape. [Online] Available at: http://www.consciousape.com/news/battle-of-the-beanfield-birth-of-a-police-state/ [Accessed 19 October 2011].
Mcintyre, M., 2009. The Northern Echo. [Online] Available at: http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/history/mining/minersstrike/4193164.___We_were_never_Margaret_Thatcher___s_boot_boys___/ [Accessed 19 October 2011].
www.workersliberty.org, 2007. Workers' Liberty. [Online] Available at: http://www.workersliberty.org/node/9606 [Accessed 19 October 2011].