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Security in London – Visitors Checklist

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The Metropolitan Police offers plenty of sensible advice to visitors which will severely reduce your chances of being a victim of crime.

Top 5 most vulnerable locations

1. Transport hubs and stations.

2. Crowded places / rush hour

3. ATM and cash machine locations

4. Cafés, restaurants, pubs and clubs.

5. Schools, colleges and universities

Insurance: always travel with sufficient travel insurance and check the small print in your policy to ensure you are fully covered for loss of valuables or any medical costs or repatriation.

Cash: try not to carry large amounts of cash or valuables. If you must carry cash and expensive items be discreet in public. Wherever possible, carry cash substitutes such as prepaid cards or credit cards. Consider wearing a money belt or ankle pouch. Keep a written record of your credit and bank card numbers, and always keep them in a safe place.

Passports: always keep your passport and travel documents safe and have a copy their serial numbers so that if they are lost or stolen you can report them immediately and get a replacement. It’s a good idea to write down the contact number of your Embassy or Consulate if you need support and advice.

Luggage: never leave your luggage unattended even for a few seconds. Always keep bags in your possession and close to you. Clearly mark all your luggage with your identification and contact number or e-mail and include identification on the inside of your luggage. Try to lock or secure zippers or use a strap around your case or bag to make it difficult for someone to gain access.

Hotels: choose your hotel with care, go for one with a sound reputation, good reviews and security. Never leave valuables in your hotel room instead put your valuables in the hotel safe or with hotel safe-deposit box services.

Mobile phones, cameras and laptops: these items are desirable to thieves so always keep them close and never unattended on a table or in your hotel room. It’s a good idea to keep records of serial numbers and make and model details in case you need to claim on insurance.

Pickpockets: be aware of pickpockets, keep your wallets and purses close to you at all times. Be wary of staged distractions such as street performers and street gamblers if you are jostled, bumped, hugged or crowded by anyone, consider that a pickpocket may be in action. If your pocket is picked, call out immediately for assistance and warn others.

Road safety: take extra care when crossing the road. Always try to cross at marked crossing points and remember to look both ways as traffic including cycles may be coming from a different direction than you are used to.

Cycling on one of the famous “Boris Bikes” in London can be a great way to see the sights but be particularly careful in traffic and don’t get too close to buses and large vehicles as they often turn suddenly and may not see you. Remember that in England we drive on the left side of the road.

Sightseeing: it’s a good idea to have a map or travel guide with you so you can orientate yourself. Keep a note of your hotel details so that if you do get lost you can make your way back to where you started. When in restaurants, bars, theatres or cinemas never leave your bag on the floor or over the back of your chair. Keep it where you can see it.

Only buy theatre or concert tickets from reliable sources and not from ‘touts’ in the street. If you’re out and about at night on foot try to keep to busy, well-lit areas.

Taxis: only use Taxis or registered minicabs it’s a good idea to plan your route before you leave. See related link –  Transport for London website

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014 , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

London Security : Bogus Police Officers

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Groups of criminals sometimes pose as police officers, particularly in the central London area, in order to trick people and steal their money, credit cards and valuables. These individuals wear ordinary clothes and use fake Police IDs to search people and take what they can. If you are stopped by a police officer, ALWAYS ask to see their Police ID.

The ID card will always have:

Photograph of the officer

Name

Identity number

Metropolitan Police Service hologram

It is always worth remembering that police officers would rarely search visitors or tourists unless they suspected some wrong doing. Those that do search are likely to be wearing uniforms and must give you certain information. If you suspect the police officers is bogus, check their ID very closely and demand to see a policeman in uniform. Real police will never confiscate your private property especially money, credit cards and valuables in this manner.

Real Police officers have the right to stop and search anyone but will only do so if they If they think you’re carrying a weapon, drugs, stolen property, or articles to commit criminal damage, if there has been serious violence or disorder in the vicinity or as part of anti-terrorism efforts.

The police officer or police community support officer must explain why you are being stopped, A police community support officer must be in uniform. A police officer does not have to be in uniform but if they are not wearing uniform and they search you they must show you their warrant card.

The police who stop and search you must provide you with certain information including:

Their name and the station where they work (unless the search is in relation to suspected terrorist activity or giving his or her name may place the officer in danger. They must then give a warrant card or identification number)

The law under which you have been stopped

Your rights

Why you have been stopped and searched

Why they chose you

What they are looking for

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014 , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

Exhibition Review : Crime Museum Uncovered at the Museum of London – 9th October 2015 to 10th April 2016

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The Museum of London presents a new exhibition entitled The Crime Museum Uncovered, the exhibition  displays never-before-seen-objects from the Metropolitan Police’s Crime Museum which are on public view for the very first time. The exhibition created in partnership with the Metropolitan Police Service and the Mayor’s Office for Policing And Crime (MoPAC) – will reveal some of the secrets of the Crime Museum, which was established by the police in the mid-1870s.

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The Crime Museum in Scotland Yard is a private Museum which is only accessible to police professionals and invited guests. The objects in the Crime Museum were originally collected for use as a training resource for officers in the mid – 1870s, although the general public have not had access to the collection it has been the source of fascination over many years.

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The exhibition examines the changing nature of crime and advances in police detection in the last 140 years. An illustration of the changing nature of crime is the first few rooms that concentrate on the 19th century, One of the main exhibits is a Violin, tools, false arm and folding ladder belonging to notorious cat-burglar, Charles Peace, who was a  musician serenading households by day; returning robber by night. Perhaps more macabre are the various death masks of executed criminals and the Execution ropes used to hang convicted criminals. Other items include information relating to the Jack the Ripper case, the Tichbourne claimant, handcuffs reportedly worn by notorious thief, Jack Sheppard and the gun used by Edward Oxford in an assassination attempt on Queen Victoria in 1840.

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The exhibition then moves into the 20th century and concentrates on 24 individuals cases that illustrate some of the most notorious or important cases.

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A number of high-profile cases are featured including Dr Crippen, Ruth Ellis, Derek Bentley, Leslie Stones, The Krays and the Richardsons.

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Other sections include items related to particular periods and themes such as Terrorism, The Cold War and Espionage, Fraud, Forgery, Robbery, Drugs, Firearms and Weapons.

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All of the sections have their own fascination, the Cold war section contains  Microdots containing secret messages and microdot reader found in Mrs Kroger’s handbag when arrested for her involvement in the Portland Soviet Spy Ring (1961). Weapons and Firearms show the way that criminals have developed more sophisticated weapons over time and the police have had to respond with their own array of weapons.

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The exhibition has been very careful to feature the victims of crime as well as the criminals and to examine how criminal investigations have had to deal with the darker side of London history. In the final section, a series of films make this point, criminal activity is a fact of life in the London story and the exhibition offers some insight into how the constant battle between the police and criminals has developed over time.

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In many respects, this exhibition is about the darker side of human nature and reflects how British society has dealt with many threats either from individuals and groups. Not surprisingly, London has featured heavily in these many crimes and been the focus of police innovations since the Metropolitan Police Force was formed.  Although the media often tries to glamourise criminals, the exhibition makes the important point that it is the victims that deserve our sympathy and are too often forgotten.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

If you would like further information about the exhibition or book tickets, visit the Museum of London website here

The Crime Museum Uncovered runs from 9 October 2015 – 10 April 2016 and will be accompanied by a publication and programme of talks and events. Tickets available from £12.50 online; £15 on the door. Wednesdays only; tickets from £10.

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here