Constable Fred Riley and Constable Iain MacTaggart

Constable Fred Riley and Constable Iain MacTaggart

Frederick Riley joined the City of Glasgow Police in 1938 and was posted to the ‘F’ (Maryhill) Division. He was allocated the Register Number H.442.

Iain MacTaggart, was born in Tarbet, Loch Fyne, the son of the local Police Sergeant. After service with the Royal Marines during the Second World War, he joined the City of Glasgow Police in 1949. He was posted to the ‘F’ (Maryhill) Division and allocated the Register Number L.59.

In the early morning of 8 June 1958, Constables Riley and MacTaggart were patrolling on Garscube Road, Glasgow, when they became aware of a tenement fire at 466 Garscube Road. The immediately rushed to the scene and entered the smoke filled building. The constables ran up the stairs and broke open doors and got several persons to safety. They tried to enter one of the flats but they were beaten back by the flames and saw that the occupier, a 66 years old man, was apparently dead. Wrapping wet towels around their heads they repeatedly entered the building until Constable Riley collapsed overcome by heat and smoke. Constable MacTaggart carried him to the safety of the street and entered again to lead other families out of the building. Both officers were taken to hospital and later recovered.

For their outstanding courage, both Constable Riley and Constable MacTaggart were awarded the Queen’s Commendation for Brave Conduct and the Glasgow Corporation Bravery Medal.

Constable MacTaggart, well known for his immaculate appearance in uniform, would go on to represent Strathclyde Police at the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Reception at Hendon on 6 May 1977 and was awarded the British Empire Medal for Distinguished Service in 1979.