Fishlake History Society

Recording historical information before it disappears

Fishlake History Society

Recording historical information before it disappears



The beginnings of Modern Policing in Fishlake.



A village Constable. Thanks to piniterest.

Throughout the post Norman England the unpaid (expect for expenses) parish constable emerged as the local peace keeper having a wide variety of duties. See previous blog entitled The Fishlake Parish Constable. The beginning of the modern police force, police officers and their duties were very different from the yearly appointed unpaid parish constable of bygone times.

The establishment of the West Riding Yorkshire Constabulary. 

The County Police Act 1839. This was a permissive measure which enabled the Justices to set up a paid county police force. An Act the following year authorised the amalgamation of borough and country forces where it was though desirable. Later, the county and borough Police Act 1856 required the Justices to set up a force for any parts of the county still not covered. The approximate formation of the county police force in Yorkshire, West Riding was in 1856/7. Taken from The Local Historians Encyclopaedia. John Richardson.

However the West Yorkshire Archive in Wakefield hold record of the West Riding Constabulary (1825-1969), (1968-1974, West Yorkshire Metropolitan Police (1970-1986 and West Yorkshire Police (1987-2004.

A catalogue of Fishlake Police Constables, primary taken from the Fishlake census returns. There still remains some gaps and uncertainties yet to be determined.

1861 George White aged 44 born in Kirk Burton. Recorded as Police Officer.

1871 James Cowan aged 42 born in Ireland wife Elizabeth aged 34. Lived at 1 Smith Square

1881 non recorded.

1878 John Henry Chase buried on 19 September aged 22. Not clear if he was the village constable.

1891 Andrew Johnson Haygreen aged 27, born in Sheffield. West Riding Police Constable.

1901 George Fawbert aged 31 wife Ann aged 29 lived at Pinfold Lane.

The Lilacs a cottage, Haygreen, note the Police insignia over the door.

PC John Langton in uniform.

John Langton lived at the Laurels in 1911.

Jack Waite who lived on The Bank.

PC Froggitt. (unsure).

Death of a local retired Police Constable.

From Fishlake: The Story of a South Yorkshire Village. Found this in a newspaper report of December 1934. Retired PC's body found in dyke.

Riding home on a tricycle along a country lane near Thorne, Yorkshire, a retired policeman, George Henry Wright (69), Fosterhouses, Fishlake, met a tragic death. He had to ride up a short, steep 'hump-back' bridge (Camel's Hump) and just as he was nearing the summit, his tricycle rolled over backwards, toppled over and Wright rolled down the dyke bank into 2ft 6ins of water. He lay there until found next morning (by Harold Hodgson). This theory was accepted by the Doncaster Coroner (Mr WH Carlisle) at an inquest yesterday when a verdict of 'accidental death' was returned. PC England said wheel marks showed how the tricycle had rolled backwards. the body was discovered next morning when the upturned tricycle was found on the grass verge. the man's watch had stopped at 7.30. (It is not clear were or not George Wright had been a Fishlake bobby).

1939 PC Alfred Poole aged 33 was the Fishlake bobby. He lived at Hay Green with hsi wife Winifred.

Bobby Little said to be "a lovely man".

Sargent Adams lived in Trundle Lane but he was not the village Bobby, it was PC Sharpe.

George Sharpe, 1950 -1977, said by some to be "very strict". Who lived at the end house at Pinfold Gardens. This house carried the coat of arms of the police authority of the West Riding of Yorkshire. The coat arms was removed when it ceased to be a police house in the 1970’s. Villages must use Stainforth police station. The station may now longer exist.

PC George Sharpe and his wife Margaret.

Thanks for some of the above information to Fishlake The story of a South Yorkshire village 2000. Thanks to Lorraine Haig for information and photographs regarding her great grandfather of John Langton.

Robert Downing February 2023.