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Member and Ambassador Tony Thompson writes as follows.


“You may be aware that the 20th anniversary of the Great Heck (near Selby) Rail Crash is on 28th February this month. Coincidentally, it is the also the 46th, anniversary of the Moorgate Tube Disaster in February 1975).

 I attended at Great Heck and am coordinating arrangements for a live-streamed memorial service at Selby Abbey this year and attach a briefing note for circulation to the History Group and anyone else who may be interested. There are two events taking place, both live-streamed at 1000 and 1400. I am informing all other emergency services and BTP Media Relations at FHQ, and am liaising with the railway operator, Network Rail and relatives of the deceased.

 I also attach a copy of the commendation ceremony booklet from 2003 which provides further information”.


Memorial Events for the 20th Anniversary of the Great Heck Rail Crash Sunday 28th February 2021 What happened At 6.12am on Wednesday 28th February 2001, a Land Rover pulling a trailer on the westbound M62 motorway in North Yorkshire left the carriageway and ended up fouling the main southbound line. Almost immediately afterwards, the 04.45 GNER passenger train from Newcastle to London King's Cross struck the Land Rover partially derailing the driving cab. Some fifteen seconds later, the passenger train struck an oncoming freight train carrying coal. The two trains were derailed killing the coal train driver and the passenger train driver, together with eight other people on the passenger train. Eighty-six people were injured, some severely. What is taking place on 28th February 2021 The 20th anniversary of the Great Heck rail crash will be remembered with commemorative events taking place at Newcastle upon Tyne Central Railway Station, the Great Heck Memorial Garden, and in Selby Abbey. National coronavirus regulations and lockdown restrictions in England severely limit what is legally permissible, so these acts of remembrance will be live-streamed. Details on how to watch them online are given below. 10am Memorial Event 1: Newcastle and Great Heck Train operator LNER, together with Network Rail and Freightliner, is hosting an online memorial which will be live-streamed from Newcastle Central Railway Station and the memorial garden at the crash site at Great Heck. Wreaths will be laid and there will be readings, which will pause as an LNER passenger train passes Great Heck and sounds its horn as a tribute. If you would like to watch this online memorial you will need to register. Please click HERE to register. If you have any questions, please email them to 2pm Memorial Event 2: Memorial Service at Selby Abbey, North Yorkshire There will be an online memorial service live-streamed from Selby Abbey, led by Canon John Weetman, Vicar of Selby Abbey, and the Reverend Peter Hibbs. A commemorative candle will be lit for each of the ten men who lost their lives. To watch the service please click HERE. You do not have to register. If you have any questions, please email them to

Information from John O'donnell
Death of Pat WALTON (23/3/38x1/1/21)former constable Newcastle and wife of Jim DI FHQ.
Sorry for late notification but I received late notice from Jim’s daughter Marie-Claire that Pat had died on 1 st January 2021.
 The funeral was held at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church, Leighton Buzzard today and was well attended given the Covid circumstances.  The committal took place at the old Linslade cemetery.
 Not sure of her service details but guess you can obtain these and I can through Jim’s daughter get more detail if you want as I guess there may be retired officers who will remember Pat and certainly remember Jim if you could include Pat in the retired lines.
 Trust you are keeping well and look forward to seeing you at some stage in the hopefully near normal future.

Information from Ian Oliver


  • To let you know that Douglas Leslie SOPPITT, a life member of NARBTPO, passed away on 19th January 2021.

    His home address was in Sholing, Southampton.

    The funeral will take place on 17/02/2021.

    Ian Oliver

    Southampton Retire Assn.

We received this today regarding an old colleague:-

 today we received your Retired Lines for Leonard Boughton who used to live at Bickerley Green. Sadly he passed away over a year ago on 1st December 2019. Sorry to give you sad news, and please cancel the newsletter.

Sarah Anstey

Bickerley Green Nursing and Residential Home

Kingsbury Lane


BH24 1EL


Hi All please see below

I have been informed via NARPO of the passing of the below :

Peter John CAIN, who served at Garston Dock and Liverpool, sadly passed away on 9th November 2019 believed aged 94.

No other details are known at this time.

Please see below message from Elaine  Derek, PA to the CC



BTP Chief Constable Paul Crowther retires in early February and I have started a retirement messages book for his current and ex colleagues who have worked with him over his 40 years’ service. I think it would be a great memento, and he would also be extremely touched, if the book contained messages from colleagues who have worked with him during his service, PC, DC and as he worked his way up the ranks. I am sure many NARBTPO members will have some great memories. If any would like to share them in a message to Paul can I ask they email them to me and I will arrange for them to be transferred into the messages book. I will need these by 10 January. My email is

Information from John Bryant

Good Morning all.

I have been advised by FHQ that the new Chief Constable to replace Paul Crowther will be Deputy Assistant Commissioner MPD Lucy D'Orsi..
If you log onto the BTP website there is a entry about the new chief constable which has a full resume of the appointment.

"I have today received the sad news from Dave Breen (Via Facebook) that Betty Nuttall has passed away in the Nursing Home that she has been in for a number of years. I am advised that she was taken ill and admitted to hospital but was later returned to the Nursing Home. Betty was on the same recruit course at Tadworth with me in 1961 and she spent her whole career until retirement, in Manchester. She was a regular attender at the NW Retired Officer lunches in Liverpool until she took ill and was admitted to the Nursing Home. As soon as I have any further details I will let you know."

I have today recieved a letter from the wife of Geoffrey SCAMBLER to say that he sadly passed away after a short illness  at Lancaster Royal Infirmary on 7th November 2019, aged 93 years. He retired in 1985 as an inspector at Manchester Piccadilly. Rest in Peace Geoffrey.