Before I got back into my old childhood hobby of wargaming in the later 1990s, my hobby was collecting model police cars and various bits of police paraphernalia from around the world. I built up quite a large collection, which up till recently was kept in a dark corner of the Wellington Central Police Station (where I haven’t been since 2005).
Recently I was contacted by the manager of Wellington Central, who told me that they were going to renovate the floor where the display cases were situated. “Oh no,” I thought, “here it comes – they want me to take my stuff away, and I don’t know what I’ll do with it all!” But, no, instead he told me they were going to move the display into a much more prominent position in front of the lifts that lead to the cafeteria.
I popped into Central today to take a look at what they have done. I was delighted! So I just had to take some photos, even though all I had with me was my rather ancient phone camera. Here are the pics I took, in case any of you are interested in seeing this collection. There are even a few items that could possibly be used in a modern wargaming setting!
And, oh how I would love to own those display cases for my wargaming armies! But although the collection is mine, the cases belong to the Police.
Display case 1
Top shelf: France, Spain. Second shelf: Netherlands. Third shelf: old Eastern Bloc. Fourth shelf: Switzerland, Austria and Japan.
Below: A couple of 1/24th scale models of Dutch police vehicles. The Mercedes traffic car is a standard kitset, but the Shorland armoured car I converted from a Landrover kit.
Below: A 1/43rd scale die-cast French riot van reflected in a shiny French riot helmet.
Display case 2
Top shelf: United Kingdom. Second shelf: New Zealand. Third shelf: Germany. Fourth shelf: police shoulder patches from various Asian and Middle East nations.
Below: The blue and white helmets on the second shelf were the ones I used to wear many years ago as a young constable on the beat.
Below: German police vehicles in a range of scales from 1/18th (the cute BMW Isetta) to 1/87th (the water cannon). The hat is a 1950s German police shako.
Display case 3
Top shelf: Luxembourg, UN and Belgium. Second shelf: USA. Third shelf: more USA. Fourth shelf: police shoulder patches from various Pacific nations.
Display case 4
Top shelf: Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Australia and Tonga. Second shelf: Italy and Hong Kong. Third shelf: Scandanavia. Fourth shelf: Greece, Canada, South Africa, Northern Ireland and Portugal.
Below: A South African Police Landrover. This started life as a 1/43rd die-cast pick-up truck, but I added the cage in the back. Not a very PC model, I know …
Display case 5
This is a bit different from the others, as it isn’t part of my personal collection. These items were brought back by my colleagues who worked in Thailand doing disaster victim identification after the Boxing Day tsunami.
Oh, and that of course is me reflected in the glass!