A memorialis being held to mark the anniversary of the death of ‘Haslemere’s hero’ at the town’s Memorial Green on Sunday, July 30 at midday.
Police Inspector William Donaldson was the first Surrey constabulary police officer to be killed in active duty.
He lost his life in 1855 trying to restore law and order in Haslemere when a group of railway navvies went on a drunken rampage. They beat him to death and seriously injured his constable and the town doctor before police reinforcements arrived.
Donaldson is buried in St Bartholomew’s Church, Haslemere, and his funeral was attended by senior officers including four divisional superintendents and a column of 32 constables.
Insp Donaldson’s heroism is recorded on the Police Roll of Honour and he is still celebrated as the ‘Hero of Haslemere’ in the town.