Constable William Hazelton

About Midnight on 31 July 1958, Constable Hazelton was in Kidston Street, Gorbals, Glasgow, along with Constable Bernard Thompson, were on beat patrol at when they came across some twenty-five young men who were causing a disturbance.

When the officers approached the group, they were met with open hostility. Constable Hazelton was struck on the side of his face with a bottle thrown by one of the number, who appeared to be the ring-leader. This action roused the rest of the group and the Constables were separated and each was severely assaulted.

Constable Thompson was struck to the ground and repeatedly kicked about the head and body. Constable Hazelton by the use of his baton, fought his way to his side in an effort to protect him. Bottles continued to be hurled at the officers, attacks were renewed and the two officers were again separated. Despite the attention he was personally receiving, Constable Hazelton struggled to his colleague, and, standing astride the latter’s body, kept the assailants at bay.

When a diversion occurred, Constable Hazelton, in the face of further attacks, and although injured himself, managed to carry Constable Thompson into a nearby close where both were given refuge in a house until reinforcements arrived.

Constable Hazelton, in going in twice to the aid of his unconscious colleague and removing him in the face of a mob attack, acted in the highest traditions of the police service. (London Gazette – 6 February 1959)

For his gallantry, Constable Hazelton was awarded the British Empire Medal for Gallantry and the Corporation of Glasgow Bravery Medal.