You've Met The Met
There are fewer of us around these days who took part in the Miners’ Strike of 1984/5, what with it getting on for nearly 30 years ago. Urban myths and legends abounded at the time and I feel compelled to recount one now before it dies along with the rest of the industry.
Many will remember that local police forces were unable to cope with the demand on their resources to control coalfield areas and hence out-of-town forces were drafted in. (One suggested reason being that politicians didn’t want post-strike relationships between the local police and the community being soured by the dirty work they needed done.)
The self-appointed elite of these “foreigners” were the Met. Used to dealing with East End low-life rather than shit-for-brains colliers they considered themselves the Dog’s Bollocks and, indeed, were set apart from other forces by their unique white (as opposed to blue) shirt collars.
The story goes that on one occasion in Grimethorpe, a God-forsaken saloon town near Barnsley, where the people made nothing of themselves except fucking good soldiers or colliers, the Met were controlling picketing.
They’d snatched a number of pickets and held them secure in the meat wagon. Because of the numbers they were taking they didn’t have enough handcuffs to restrain the prisoners so they’d used plastic electricians’ tie-wires.
On the way to the station one of the officers accompanying them in the van produced a sticker and slapped it on their coats. Not a good reader at the best of times but standing no chance of trying to read it upside-down, one of the prisoners said, “What’s that?”
The bobby said, “It says ‘You’ve met the Met’”.
With his hands secured tightly behind his back the miner looked at him for a few seconds then nutted him square on the bridge of his nose and said, “Yes, and now tha’s bin to Grimey”.