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Reading Police Station
Reading Police Station

Reading Location Tour 10: Reading Central Police Station

The Police Station was built in 1974 on the site of Daniel Plotnik's Fruity Garter Emporium, itself built on the much earlier and now infamous 'Destructo' brick factory, where a small charge of the newly fashionable nitro-glycerine was baked into house bricks in order for a quick and convenient form of self-destruction at the end of the building's life. Such a demonstration of forward thinking might have resulted in great riches for the city if an unforeseen earth tremor in 1874 hadn't led to the detonation of 75% of the bricks and the unwarranted destruction of half the city's buildings. Even today Reading demolition can be a risky business, and residents are warned not to use a hammer drill when putting up shelves.

The station was for many years home to the Wiltshire and Berkshire Constabulary's most famous son: DCI Friedland Chymes, whose astonishing and unparalleled career thrilled many a reader through the pages of Amazing Crime Stories. His shock resignation in 2004 was a PR disaster that has yet to be fully addressed. The station is also home to the little-known and notoriously underfunded Nursery Crime Division headed by DI Jack Spratt and DS Mary Mary. This small and hitheroe unnoticed police department deals with the many nursery characters who live in Reading and is notable not just for the successful solving of the Humpty Dumpty case, but also because it is the first - and only - Police Department to employ an alien.

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