On 5th February, 1957, the Warwickshire Constabulary will be one hundred years old. It came into existence on 5th February, 1857, as a result of the passing of the County and Borough Police Act in the previous year. The anniversary affords a suitable opportunity to give a little thought to the question of how the County Force came to be formed and to trace briefly its development through the years down to the present day.
No doubt to the average member of the public the police force is simply just one of the public services which go to make possible a civilised community.The question of exactly why such a service is necessary or how it came into being is never thought of and so long as it is available if required, and its activities do not unduly interfere with the convenience of the individual, very little thought is given to it. The Warwickshire Police Force did not, however, suddenly materialise overnight at the stroke of the pen of some nineteenth century civil servant, but was rather a development of a previous incomplete system of law enforcement. A study of how the police force as a whole, and the Warwickshire Constabulary in particular, came to be created is an interesting subject as this brief outline of its history will show.