Annual Report 1984
The carnage of the bomb at the Grand Hotel, Brighton had unpleasant side effects. It generated a number of bomb hoaxes, all of which caused a severe drain on police resources. As a result of one hoax, the Town Hall at Hastings, where a 1066 celebration was being held, had to be evacuated. The town centre was closed off, traffic diversions set up and the other emergency services attended. The same day another call was received that a device was under a bench at the memorial in the centre of the town. Officers saw a box which appeared to contain a glass jar packed with nails and screws with wires leading to four white tubes which looked like sticks of gelignite.
The pattern for 1984 began with the incident at Arundel on Sunday 11th March, when PC Philips was shot and wounded. PC Elliot was assaulted and PCs Rager and Codling taken hostage. A unique series of events and it’s pleasing to see that PC Philips has recovered and returned to operational duties.
An inadequate spare vehicle capacity continued to be a problem, a situation worsened by the fleet’s exceptionally heavy commitment in policing the NUM dispute.