For many, French or not, "Scotland Yard" evokes the "Bobby", the courteous and unarmed policeman, or Sherlock Holmes, certainly the most famous detective in the world. So much so that the "Guinness World Records" ranks him as the literary character most often represented worldwide in films and television series.
But back to "Scotland Yard" where I spent part of this Sunday evening. Its official name is the "Metropolitan Police Service" most often abbreviated to "Met". It is the police institution that is in charge of the 32 “boroughs” forming London, a bit like the larger equivalent of the Parisian districts. But it is also responsible for missions throughout Great Britain. This is for example the case for terrorism. This makes it the most important British police institution by far, whether by the number of its personnel or by the number of cases handled.
Still, it is best known as "Scotland Yard". Established in 1829, the 'Metropolitan Police Service' was then housed at 4 Whitehall Place, but the entrance for the public was at the rear of the building on the street 'Great Scotland Yard' and through time the street name and the "Metropolitan Police Service" have become synonymous. Although having changed address three times and today, even if the entrance, whether public or main, is no longer in the street "Great Scotland Yard", the institution has kept this name, respect to custom in a way. This reflects well, I feel, one of the characteristics of the British spirit, one of the only two Western States to have remained faithful to an uncodified and largely customary constitution.
Still, during this evening I had the chance and the privilege of climbing to the top of this beautiful building from the 10s on the left bank of the Thames. And on its outdoor terrace, my God what a view! Within a radius of three hundred metres: Big Ben, The Palace of Westminter, 27 Downing street, Westminter Abbey, the Big Wheel, pink at the moment in honor of Gay Pride which will take place on June XNUMX, and i on the way.
A somewhat unexpected but much appreciated way to better understand my new country of residence.