Scotland Yard


Scotland Yard
1. a short street in central London, England: formerly the site of the London police headquarters, which were removed 1890 to a Thames embankment (New Scotland Yard).
2. the metropolitan police of London, esp. the branch engaged in crime detection.
[1860-65]

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Headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police, and, by extension, the force itself.

The London police force was created in 1829 by Sir Robert Peel and housed at 4 Whitehall Place, which had an entrance in Great Scotland Yard. In 1890 it moved to a new building; that location became New Scotland Yard, a name that was kept when it moved again in 1967. In addition to duties common to all metropolitan police forces (including crime detection and prevention and traffic management), it is entrusted with civil defense in times of emergency, and it maintains a special branch for guarding visiting dignitaries, royalty, and political dignitaries. It keeps records on all known criminals in Britain, and other British police forces often seek its assistance. It also helps train the police of Commonwealth nations.

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▪ British police
 the headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police and, by association, a name often used to denote that force. It is located south of St. James's Park (Saint James) in the borough of Westminster (Westminster, City of).

      The London police force was created in 1829 by an act introduced in Parliament by the home secretary, Sir Robert Peel (Peel, Sir Robert, 2nd Baronet) (hence the nicknames “bobbies” and “peelers” for policemen). This police force replaced the old system of watchmen and eventually supplanted the River (Thames) Police and the Bow Street patrols, the latter a small body of police in London who had been organized in the mid-18th century by the novelist and magistrate Henry Fielding and his half brother, Sir John Fielding. The original headquarters of the new London police force were in Whitehall, with an entrance in Great Scotland Yard, from which the name originates. (Scotland Yard was so named because it stood on the site of a medieval palace that had housed Scottish royalty when the latter were in London on visits.)

      When Scotland Yard stationed its first plainclothes police agents on duty in 1842, there was a public outcry against these “spies,” but the police force gradually won the trust of the London public by the time Scotland Yard set up its Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in 1878. The CID initially was a small force of plainclothes detectives who gathered information on criminal activities.

      By the late 19th century the London police headquarters at Scotland Yard had grown increasingly overcrowded, and in 1890 a new headquarters building was opened on the Thames Embankment and named New Scotland Yard. In 1967 the headquarters were again moved to a new building, this one at the junction of Victoria Street and Broadway, also called New Scotland Yard.

      The area supervised by the London Metropolitan Police includes all of Greater London with the exception of the City of London (London, City of), which has its own separate police force. The Metropolitan Police's duties are the detection and prevention of crime, the preservation of public order, the supervision of road traffic, and the licensing of public vehicles. The administrative head of Scotland Yard is the commissioner, who is appointed by the crown on the recommendation of the home secretary. Beneath the commissioner are various assistant commissioners overseeing such operations as administration, traffic and transport, criminal investigation (the CID), and police recruitment and training. The CID deals with all aspects of criminal investigation and comprises the criminal record office, fingerprint and photography sections, the company fraud squad, a highly mobile police unit known as the Flying Squad, the metropolitan police laboratory, and the detective-training school.

      Scotland Yard keeps extensive files on all known criminals in the United Kingdom. It also has a special branch of police who guard visiting dignitaries, royalty, and statesmen. Finally, Scotland Yard is responsible for maintaining links between British law-enforcement agencies and Interpol. Although Scotland Yard's responsibility is limited to metropolitan London, its assistance is often sought by police in other parts of England, particularly with regard to difficult cases. It also assists in the training of police personnel in the countries of the Commonwealth. Since 1833 the Yard has published The Police Gazette (Police Gazette, The). See also Police: The formation of the English police (police).

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Scotland Yard — [so named because orig. the residence of the kings of Scotland when in London] 1. short street in London, off Whitehall, orig. the site of police headquarters 2. headquarters of the metropolitan London police, on the Thames embankment since 1890 …   English World dictionary

  • Scotland Yard — used allusively for London Metropolitan Police, 1864, from name of short street off Whitehall, London; from 1829 to 1890 headquarters of the Metropolitan Police Force, hence, the force itself, especially the detective branch. After 1890, located… …   Etymology dictionary

  • Scotland Yard — er en populær betegnelse for Londons kriminalpoliti. De fik navnet efter den bygning de oprindelig opererede fra …   Danske encyklopædi

  • Scotland Yard — (izg. skòtland jȃrd) m DEFINICIJA zgrada u kojoj je smještena glavna uprava londonske policije (službeno New S. Y.) i često sinonim za londonsku policiju, osobito njezin kriminalistički odjel ETIMOLOGIJA engl …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • Scotland Yard — For other uses, see Scotland Yard (disambiguation). New Scotland Yard, London Scotland Yard is a metonym for the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police Service of London, UK. It derives from the location of the original Metropolitan Police… …   Wikipedia

  • Scotland Yard — New Scotland Yard heute, 10 Broadway. New Scotland Yard [ˌskɒtləndˈjɑːd] (engl. für „(neuer) schottischer Hof“), häufig kurz Scotland Yard oder auch nur The Yard genannt, ist das Hauptquartier des Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), wird aber auch …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Scotland Yard — Scot|land Yard 〈[ skɔ̣tlənd ja:(r)d] ohne Artikel〉 (Hauptdienststelle der) Londoner Kriminalpolizei [engl., „schottischer Platz“ (nach dem Sitz des Dienstgebäudes in London)] * * * Scot|land Yard [ skɔtlənd jɑ:d ], der; [nach der früheren Lage… …   Universal-Lexikon

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