In 1845 the Council agreed that the Police needs of Southsea would be met if one of the inspectors resided there.
But by the 14th June 1873, the first Southsea Police Station was erected on Corporation land, at the junction of Albert Road and Victoria Road North. The date over the doors of older Police Stations help to trace the growth of Portsmouth and this Station was no exception.
When it opened, the Police Division of Southsea Police Station numbered twenty eight and the first prisoner “run in”, was a lad for playing “pitch and toss”.
On the 28th July 1891, a letter was read from the Chairman of the Library Committee, submitting a plan, to propose alterations to Southsea Police Station, to enable a branch library to be established there. The proposal was adopted.
On the 4th December 1934, Messrs. E.& E. Smee, stated that they did not propose to continue the arrangements under which they cared for the garden in front of Southsea Police Station. Resolved that the Parks, Open Spaces and Cemeteries Committee be asked to take over the care of the garden.
On the 7th December 1948 “C” Division (Southsea) moved from the Albert Road Police Station site, to ‘Craneswater Tower ‘16 Festing Road, Southsea, to enable the Station to be rebuilt. These Festing Road premises had been compulsory purchased on the 19th January 1948.
Following the rebuilding of the Albert Road premises,Southsea Police Station was opened by the Chairman of the Watch Committee (Councillor Clark) on the 19th March 1956.
The property at 16 Festing Road, Southsea, formerly used as Southsea Police Station, was sold by public auction in June 1956, for the sum of £8,000- a net loss to the Corporation of £4,491.1 8s. 4d. These figures were given to the City Council, after Councillor Bell had sought this information from the Chairman of the Watch and Fire Brigade Committee (Councillor Clark)
Councillor Clark said that the value of the premises was assessed in 1947 at £8,000 – the Corporation negotiated purchase for £6,700, on top of which, there were surveyors fees and stamp duties, totalling another £281.17s.6d.
After providing for development charges, which were payable to the Central Land Board, the total cost to the Corporation was £12,491.18s.4d. Asked by Councillor Bell, if he was satisfied that this transaction represented good business acumen, the Chairman said he did not,” I am very dissatisfied indeed” he said.
The former library in Albert Road was converted into Southsea Police Station, in place of the Festing Road building at a cost of £29,000.
In April 1994 the Police Station was closed and Southsea Police Station was relocated in the former City of Portsmouth Passenger Transport H.Q. in Highland Road, Southsea.
And what of the “old Albert Road site?”. It was placed on the market with a freehold asking price of £125,000. It was eventually purchased by the Horndean based brewery Gales Ales”, and turned into a public house. These premises were then named, “The Fuzz and FIRKIN”. (I will make no comment on the name, other than to explain that a “firkin” is a liquid measure, equal to the fourth part of a barrel – 9 gallons of liquid).
The passing of this old Police Station could not go without a little “get together,” so on Monday 11th April 1994, past and present officers, and civilian staff joined together at these premises, to swap tales, and say a “final farewell” to their old station.
Recently, this public house has now been renamed, “Goose at Victoria and Albert”.