In 22 November 1918, the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Cecil Macready, made an announcement that would change the face of policing forever.
As the nation’s men were still in Europe for the final months of the First World War, it was proposed that female police officers would be employed on what was called an “experimental basis” – with no real uniform and no powers of arrest.
A century after that watershed moment, there are now almost 8,000 women serving in the Met, including police constable Karen Giles, their longest-serving female officer, and her daughter, sergeant Jennifer Sharpling.
As the Met celebrates the centenary of female police officers patrolling London’s streets, the pair reflect on their life in policing, gender equality in the ranks, and why there’s never been a better time to be a woman in the Met…
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