1820 - 1826

Establishment of the Singapore Police Force

Our Origins


Policing in Singapore can trace its origins to soon after Sir Stamford Raffles established a trading post in Singapore. Recognising the need for law and order in the booming immigrant town, Major-General William Farquhar, the first British Resident of colonial Singapore, established the police department in 1820. He appointed his son-in-law, Francis James Bernard as the Police Assistant. The Force comprised 12 men including the Police Assistant, a writer, jailor, jemadar (sergeant), and eight peada (constables) to enforce law and order in the fledgling settlement.

The River from Monkey Bridge

© Charles Dyce, The River from Monkey Bridge. c. 1847 , Singapore: A Pictorial History, 1819 – 2000 by Gretchen Liu, Editions Didier Millet Pte Ltd, p. 30.