Daily Express

‘Photocop’ who captured Great Train Robbery scene dies at 86

- By

News Reporter

THE first detective on the scene of the Great Train Robbery 57 years ago has died.

John Bailey took fingerprin­ts and photos onboard the Royal Mail train after it was robbed of £2.6million – worth £50million today – by a gang in 1963.

In a previous interview he reflected on the scene at 5.30am – around two-and-a-half hours after the heist in Cheddingto­n, Bucks.

He said: “The coaches were full of bemused Post Office workers wondering where they were and what was going on.

“At the time I thought it was just another job, but I am very proud to have been part of the team that proved the case against the robbers. It’s not everyone who can say that.”

Mr Bailey died aged 86 after suffering a stroke, it emerged yesterday.


He was also at Leathersla­de Farm where the 16 men laid low and took photos of the Monopoly board they played with using real money from the robbery.

He even took mugshots of ringleader Bruce Reynolds and would -be fugitive Ronnie Biggs – who both died in 2013 – and the rest of the gang when they were finally captured and brought to justice.

After retiring in 1995, Mr Bailey, from Aylesbury, Bucks, worked as a portrait photograph­er and became a carer to Joyce, his wife of 66 years.

Granddaugh­ter Kelly Cook, 32, said: “He told everyone about the robbery.

“When he published his autobiogra­phy he sold a copy to his doctor, his dentist and the postman. He was an amazing man who was devoted to his wife.”

From top, Monopoly set played by the gang with real money; Leathersla­de farm; Ronnie Biggs pictured by John; and recovered mail bags full of cash

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 ??  ?? Detective John Bailey, inset, picturing the robbery scene in 1963
Detective John Bailey, inset, picturing the robbery scene in 1963
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