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Good times go for Norway's oil capital

Northern Constabulary – Unst beat vehicle 1995 opposite Muckle Flugga (Shetland) Scotland
Norway offshore jobs

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2,000 views – 16th December 2013
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In case anyone should wonder WHY the Force was called NORTHERN Constabulary, here is PC 216 Harry Edwards demonstrating EXACTLY why. Where were these photographs taken? –well, you simply cannot drive a vehicle any FURTHER north in the United Kingdom. Harry was the beat bobby for Unst until he retired in 1997.

Unst is one of the North Isles of the Shetland Islands, Scotland. It is the northernmost of the inhabited British Isles and is the third largest island in Shetland after the Mainland and Yell. It has an area of 46 square miles. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unst

Just offshore at the northernmost tip of Unst is the islet of Muckle Flugga, and Robert Louis Stevenson’s father and uncle were the main design engineers for Muckle Flugga lighthouse. Robert Louis Stevenson visited Unst, and the island is claimed to have become the basis for the map of the fictional Treasure Island.

The Lighthouse is visible in both photos.

The police vehicle is a Vauxhall Corsa M377VAS, newly supplied to Harry.

The car bears the Livery of PERIOD 2 (1980-1995) roundel era (CC: Henderson/MacMillan)

Small cars such as this were undoubtedly economical, but their practicality was suspect since bobbies tended not to be small of stature. I recall one instance where a Corsa was allocated to a one-man station near Inverness, despite the officer there being probably the tallest in the force – and he was proportionately built too. To witness him exit from the vehicle was akin to seeing a genie emerge from a bottle!

Harry clearly was taken with his last beat, as he stayed on, continuing to live on Unst after retirement.

The northern end of Unst is dominated by the hill of Saxa Vord, which housed the Saxa Vord Royal Air Force radar station which closed in 2006, with the loss of more than 100 jobs. RAF Saxa Vord was a vital part of Britain’s air defence during the Cold War.

RAF Saxa Vord was further north than Leningrad, and on the same latitude as Anchorage, Alaska. The station was named after Saxa Vord, which is the highest hill on Unst at 935 ft (285 m). It holds the unofficial British record for wind speed, which in 1962 was recorded at 177 mph (285 km/h) — just before the measuring equipment blew away.

Saxa Vord is as near to Bergen (Norway) as it is to Aberdeen, and as close to Dresden as it is to London!

Indeed the “adjoining” beats to Harry’s were :
– west-north-west – the Faroe Islands (Royal Danish Police);
– north west – Iceland; and
– east – Bergen (Norwegian Police).

To the north ………… well, there is nothing (except sea and then ice to the North Pole)!

There is no longer a permanent police presence on Unst, but in years gone by – in addition to the Northern Constabulary officer – the island also had a detachment of Royal Air Force Police, who were based at RAF Saxa Vord.

As the crow flies (or as the Viking longboat sailed) , it is some 250 miles from Unst to Bergen. If however Harry wanted to liase with his “adjoining beat” officer (in Bergen), driving from one to the other would entail travelling 2100 miles, involving 2 Shetland inter-island ferries and 3 major sea crossings (Lerwick-Aberdeen; English Channel and Skagerak) -and passing through 7 countries (Scotland, England, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, and Norway). That would have used up all his mileage for the year!!

Many thanks to 216 for supplying the photos and information. Harry, you are a legend!

Photos were taken by a Northern Constabulary officer.

Thanks conner395 for sharing!
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