Viv the Spiv did his best to dodge PC Legg at the Waterstones West Quay launch of Penny Legg's new book, Crime in the Second World War: Spivs, Scoundrels, Rogues and Worse, published by Sabrestorm Publishing.
Guests in 1940s dress mingled with those from the twenty-first century to celebrate the author's twelfth title, her first with Sabrestorm Publishing.
The overall crime rate went up by fifty-seven percent and the murder rate by twenty-two percent during the war period. This gave the author much crime to write about during a time when people on the homefront should all have been pulling together for the common good.
'In effect, there were two wars going on at once,' said Penny, 'the global conflict and a homefront one that stretched the police to its limits.'
The launch was attended by Michael O'Byrne, the retired Chief Constable of Bedfordshire Police, who wrote the Foreword; publisher Ian Bayley of Sabrestorm Publishing and period re-enactors.