The diaries of Ronald Baldwin, British Constable in the Palestine Police Force from 1946 to the termination of the British Mandate in 1948.
Friday 14 February 2014
6th and 7th April, 1948 - The end of "statics" at the Palace; the end of Ron's Police career... and nearly the end of Ron!
Tuesday, 6th April,
Back on duty at the Palace Hotel this
morning at 6a.m. A
Sergeant was on with us three B/Cs. The
offices were open and being emptied of their contents all morning. This block is expected to be closed in the
next two days. One B/C took up a
position on a veranda while the other two searched people who came through the
barrier leading to the heavily barbed wired off Hotel. We relieve and are relieved by the “Arab
The Palace Hotel, c. 1930 - It later became the Waldorf
and is currently being rebuilt as the Waldorf Astoria
We took over guard from six of these and
were relieved by one of their ranks armed with a Sten.
I thought I would have a good look at Jerusalem this afternoon so got
out the binoculars and climbed up the tower.
The view in bright sunshine was beautiful but petered out on the
mountains due to a haze rising from the valley.
The last of my static duties in the
Palestine Police was completed at 1pm on the Palace
Hotel. If there had been a few more B/Cs
around I should have felt like firing a 21 gun salute or something.
This afternoon we loaded our cases which are
not wanted on voyage onto lorries which will go to Scopus for the night.
We have been told that we start out at 7.30
tomorrow morning so all that is left is last minute packing.
My room mates and I thought it fitting to
have a farewell drink in the Canteen so we all went up to the canteen for a
gold star beer each. Then after a long chat the type which always ensues on
such occasions we retired for the night.
An incident happened at the Palace this
morning which might have changed all my plans. The sergeant and I were waiting
by a gate into the Jewish area to let the Jewish workers in. These did not come but a burst of Bren fire
from that area just passed over our heads and was obviously aimed at us. I saw visions of my boat in glorious