Mary Sophia Allen(1878-1964), Founder and Commandant of Women Police in London
Sitter in 2 portraits
Allen was a suffragette who joined the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) in 1909. After being arrested for smashing windows and experiencing force feeding, she began to consider provisions for female prisoners. Following the outbreak of the First World War, she joined the Women Police Volunteers (WPS) in Edinburgh. After the War, with men returning from service, Scotland Yard saw less value in the WPS and the Metropolitan police set up their own women's division. Allen travelled the world, offering training and advice to other police women and later became involved with the British Union of Fascists.