In 1966, Southampton-born PC Anthony Gledhill of the Metropolitan police received the highest award for a civilian – the George Cross. Tony Gledhill will give a talk at The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre on Thursday 13 April at 7.45pm, in which he will explain how that award for bravery came about.
Born in 1938 in Doncaster, Tony Gledhill became a police constable with the ‘Met’. On 25 August 1966 he was out on patrol in Deptford with fellow officer PC Terence McFall, when they received instructions to check a suspicious car. The vehicle was indeed stolen, and contained five men preparing for to carry out an armed robbery.
The police gave chase, with PC Gledhill driving, as the car sped recklessly through the streets of South London on the wrong side of the road in a one-way system. The pursuit continued for five miles, with the offenders firing repeatedly at the police vehicle. When the escaping car crashed into a lorry, the occupants leapt out and attempted to seize the police car at gunpoint.
Both constables demonstrated amazing bravery in their determination not to allow the villains to get away. Both received injuries requiring hospital treatment. The George Cross was awarded to Tony Gledhill in recognition of his courage and tenacity, and he later rose through the ranks to become a Detective Sergeant.
The talk will take place in the Langstone Room at The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre on Thursday 13 April 2107 at 7.45pm, and tickets cost £6. You can book in person at The Box Office, call 023 9247 2700, or visit our website at www.thespring.co.uk