Tag Archives: 5TSG

‘G20 death cop’ on the sick

Previously I tried to locate where TSG 5 – one of the units involved in the clearance of the Climate Camp – was based. Someone had named ‘Larkhall Road’ as the address, but there was no street of that name in London, so I made a guess of it being the nearby Clapham Police Station.

Well, today the Mail is reporting that the TSG officer who assaulted Ian Tomlinson shortly before his death is based at… Larkhall Lane. So I revisited Street View and Google Earth and came up with this – a huge building with a large car park and a very secure set of gates, with nothing to give away that it is a major police depot save for the natty blue paint job.

Says the Mail:

The building, which is protected by a 6ft-high fence and security gates, houses more than 100 TSG officers and administrative staff.

Says a webpage about a London walk:

On the corner stands a very well-secured premises. There’s a heavy gate in Union Road (the only entrance, despite a long and very high wall down Larkhall Lane itself), formidable bright blue-painted railings, and spiky yucca plants. The only sign says ‘157 Larkhall Lane’, but the many vehicles parked in the deep parking lot, which runs the length of the office building, give the game away: this is some kind of police depot which does not want to advertise itself.

Finally, there is confirmation via, of all things, the Lambeth Community Police Consultative Group, which even provides the full address – 157 Larkhall Lane, London SW4 6RE (though the main entrance is by the yard facing onto Union Road. CCTV covers the doors on Larkhall Lane itself. Ironically a shop called CRS nestles next to it on the corner of Smedley Street and Larkhall Lane.) Apparently there was a ‘Meet the TSG’ open day last November.

So apologies for the confusion, I’m sorry I got it wrong.

Here’s what it looks like, from the air and the road:

TSG 5 base, Larkhall Lane SW4

TSG 5 base, Larkhall Lane SW4

Anyway, it should be interesting to see how this pans out. Interesting to see that TSG5 officers were involved in both the death of Ian Tomlinson and the violent cleance of Climate Camp on the same evening. It would appear that Chief Inspector John Dale (if he is still in command) has a lot of explaining to do.

Watching the police: Attack on the G20 Climate Camp (part 2)

Police attack peaceful Climate Camp, 1/4/9

So, having looked for (and found) likely candidates for the locations mentioned by oimelnikov, I turned back to the footage of the police attack on Climate Camp in Bishopsgate to see if they were also correct about the units involved.

To the bottom of the screen for the most part is a large bloc of police officers in full blue boilersuit & visored helmet riot duty get up. In addition they mostly seem to be armed with see-through riot shields:

Police attack peaceful Climate Camp, 1/4/9

As we can see from the pictures above, this ‘blue bloc’ seems mostly to be a mix of officers wearing helmets marked either “MP TW” or “MP U55”. This would appear to indicate that they are Metropolitan Police divisional officers from the Twickenham sector and members of serial 5 of Territorial Support Group 5.

Towards the top of the screen are mostly officers wearing high visibility jackets over their uniforms, with black riot shields instead of transparent ones:

Police attack peaceful Climate Camp, 1/4/9

As the pictures show, their helmets are marked with the “KB” prefix. In addition, some officers wear tabards which also bear the “KB” prefix. This indicates that they are divisional officers from the Barking sector of Barking & Dagenham policing borough. [ETA: After initially identifying ‘KB’ as Barking sector of Barking & Dagenham borough, I subsequently lost the reference for this, so queried the identification. However, I have since found a list of ‘Met Police Subdivision’ identifying codes on the National Archive website, which would seem to be a fairly authoritative source.]

It is also interesting to see in amongst the Barking contingent (from whence, judging by the video footage, some of the most savage baton beatings were given out) a police cameraman and minder (identified by “EG” for ‘Evidence Gathering’ on the dark blue tabard to the right of the picture below):

Police attack peaceful Climate Camp, 1/4/9

Whether the video footage shot by EG7 finds its way – unedited – into the public domain, or whether it gets ‘lost’, or else accidentally stored next to a really, really powerful magnet, is a question which only time will answer.

One final thing of note: the video captures what looks like a tactical conflab between senior officer on the ground before they order their troops to attack the Climate Camp:

Senior TSG officers confer before clearing Climate Camp, 1/4/9

The officer to the right of that group, wearing the red epaulettes on his shoulders, can apparently later be seen in the video to the rear of the TSG 5 contingent, flanked by three officers each wearing white epaulettes:

Police attack peaceful Climate Camp, 1/4/9

Could this be Inspector Giel, commander of TSG 5’s serial 5 (as identified on this TSG command structure diagram, found online here), along with his three sergeants?

So, to wrap up, per the YouTube comments by oimelnikov, there are clearly TSG 5 officers – or certainly those wearing TSG 5’s helmets – on duty at the attack on the Climate Camp. There is a police station with a seemingly large garaging capacity in Clapham at an address near to two roads with ‘Larkhall’ in their name, and a park called Larkhall. So far I have not been able to positively identify any officers bearing TSG 4 insignia, but the address in Catford does lead us to a large police vehicle compound. In addition officers bearing the identifying mark “KB” which denotes that they are based in Twickenham and Barking are clearly visible all from the same policing borough.

ETA:

Someone has forwarded me a link to a photoset on Flickr which shows the KB police contingent (the ones in the hi-vis jackets to the top of the picture) getting stuck in to the hippies. From these photos one can clearly make out some of their warrant numbers:

  • CJ177
  • CC050
  • CW364
  • CC614

(There are also a couple which are less clear – possibly CH454 and one ending in 103?)

» Watching the police: Attack on the G2 Climate Camp (part 1)

My posts on G20:

Monday 30th March

Tuesday 31st March

Thursday 2nd April

Friday 3rd April

Sunday 5th April

Tuesday 7th April

Watching the police: Attack on the G20 Climate Camp (part 1)

I’m sure we all know to take YouTube comments with as big a pinch of salt as we would IMDb discussion board posts, but this is quite interesting. It was posted to the video on YouTube of the brutal clearing by police of the peaceful G20 Climate Camp on Bishopsgate (11,846 122,495 views and counting – and that’s just this copy), by oimelnikov:

Most of the attackers are from 5TSG and 4TSG (the call signs on their helmets are U5 and U4), based in Clapham (Larkhall Road) and Catford (Aitken Road) respectively.

Well, this intrigued me. To start with, I had a look to see if I could find possible sites for Territorial Support Group (TSG) bases at the locations mentioned. Each TSG (there are five in total) comprises five operational serials, plus support staff. Each serial splits across three vans, with nine per van. That means we’re looking for locations for TSG 4 and TSG 5 that each can garage at least 15 vans and more than a hundred coppers.

Now, there doesn’t appear to be a Larkhall Road in Clapham, though there is a Larkhall Lane and a Larkhall Rise. However, Clapham police station is on the corner of Union Grove and Smedley Street – which then leads on to Larkhall Lane and is also close to Larkhall park:

Clapham Police Station, Union Grove SW8
Clapham Police Station, Union Grove SW8
Clapham Police Station, Union Grove SW8
Clapham Police Station, Union Grove SW8

Judging by the pictures, the police station compound does seem to occupy a large footprint, with the building at the back looking like it could be vehicle workshops or some such similar.

[ETA: Please disregard the above – TSG 5 is in fact based just down the road at 157 Larkhall Lane SW4 6RE, in a large compound bounded by Smedley Road and Union Road, where the main entrance is. Please see the later post on the ‘G20 death cop’ going on the sick for details.]

Down in Catford, at the end of Aitken Road, is a large gated compound which operates as the SE garage of the Traffic Operational Command Unit, though other Metropolitan Police units also seem to be based there, in the main building and in adjacent offices:

SE Garage, Catford
SE Garage, Catford

So, looking at all this, oimelnikov’s comment seems to have some merit.

» Watching the police: Attack on the G2 Climate Camp (part 2)

Update:

Channel 4 News is now claiming that Officer ‘A’ – the one who assaulted Ian Tomlinson shortly before he died – was wearing a helmet marked ‘U41’, indicating a TSG officer from serial 1 (commanded by Inspector Dyer) of TSG4, based at Aitken Road, Catford.

[Edited to add update, Thursday 23/4/9]

Police brutality at peaceful Climate Camp In The City on G20 Day 1

Reuploaded from the original on IndyMedia.

ETA:

I originally posted up the following as a comment accompanying a link to the video on Ian Bone’s blog, but seeing as someone else has cross-posted the text elsewhere, I might as well add it here too:

There is a very clear video of the police violently wading into the hippies at the climate camp on Bishopsgate up on IndyMedia.

Whatever you or I might think of the politics of the climate camp, or indeed of fundamentalist non-violence, the video lays bare the function of the police force in all its naked, violent, powermonger-protecting glory.

And the individuals who choose to join the police, who then – day by day, situation by situation – choose to carry out orders which include, as here, acting as an anonymous, homogenous bloc of brute force, beating, bloodying, slavering over peaceniks who don’t even defend themselves despite the shields and the batons, well… I think we all know what sort of people they are. I think we all know how big and brave they are when they face anything resembling a fair fight.

ETA:

My posts on G20:

Monday 30th March

Tuesday 31st March

Thursday 2nd April

Friday 3rd April

Sunday 5th April

Tuesday 7th April