Metropolitan Police Heritage Collection

The Annexe

Empress State Building

Lillie Road




tel: +44 (0)7990547936


website: (no specific website for Heritage Collection yet)





Contact details: Leonora Baird-Smith; Phill Barnes-Warden


Date of visit: 16 August 2017


Nature and extent of collection


450 pieces. General collection of archives and objects relating to the history of the Metropolitan Police Service. Medals collection includes awards to Police Officers for gallantry/bravery; coronation medals; miniature medals.



All numbers below are estimated


Modern and paper money: There is a collection of banknotes in the Crime Museum collection

Medals (commemorative or military): 450, including police medals, long service medals, military medals, commemorative medals, coronation medals, jubilee medals and sport medals


Specific strengths: George Cross, George medals, Victoria medals, coronation medals.


Library: Collection of books primarily relating to Met history and the history of crime.





Database used: None to date. Our short term plan is to use Microsoft Excel with a view to using a dedicated CMS as the Museums get up and running.


Proportion of collection on database: N/A (see above).


How much detail in database entries? This varies across the collections.


Are images incorporated? Some objects have been photographed (including the majority of the medals) but these are not currently linked to accession numbers.


Is the database accessible to the public? No.


Is the database publicly accessible online? No.





Are there permanent numismatic displays? Yes – 10% of the medals collection is on permanent display.


Is numismatic material incorporated into more general displays? Yes.


Is there a facility for temporary exhibitions? N/A


Have there been numismatic exhibitions in the past? If so, what? Not specifically.



Access to the collection


Is there a study facility? Yes.


Is equipment (balances, magnifying glasses, etc.) provided? No.



Public engagement with numismatic collection


Is there a handling collection? Not yet, but one of our priorities is to develop one.


Are numismatic collections used in Education sessions? No.


Do numismatic collections feature in gallery talks, lectures? Yes, but these are very small scale at present.


Are there other engagement activities based around numismatic collections? No.



ID and public enquiries


Does the museum offer a service for identifying objects and other public enquiries? Yes – these are primarily related to genealogy.



Curatorial knowledge


Is there any numismatic expertise in-house? If so, who, and in what areas? Yes – from various Police staff who are involved with but do not work directly with the collections. These include Barry Nicholson (Director of Centrally Delivered Support Services) and Simon Ovens (Chief Superintendent, Harrow).


Is there access to external expertise? If so, who and in what areas? No.


If there is expertise in-house, is there a willingness/capacity to share that with other museums? N/A