A neglected landmark in the criminal history of London is finally getting a makeover after mouldering away on the Thames for years. For half a century, 1960s office block Tintagel House at Albert Embankment was occupied by the Metropolitan Police and housed the first police computer. In 1971, the revolutionary Angry Brigade tried to blow it up.
Historians of villainy will recall that Tintagel House has an even greater claim to fame. The building housed the team led by legendary detective Leonard ‘Nipper’ Read which finally snared the Krays in 1968. Nipper reputedly moved his squad over the river because the notorious twins had too many eyes and ears at Scotland Yard.
Nipper, played by Christopher Eccleston (pictured) in the recent Kray biopic Legend, was envied for his fleeting fame but the collar did little for his career.
Perhaps the developers might consider a blue plaque to the underappreciated Read, though we must declare an interest. The detective published two very readable autobiographies with equally legendary Obiter columnist James Morton.