How does the Metropolitan police plug its £500m shortfall? The Conservative group on the London Assembly thinks it has found at least a partial solution: throw open the doors of the Met’s crime museum – currently accessible by invitation only – and charge a hefty entrance fee.

The museum, housed in two rooms on the second floor of New Scotland Yard, holds a collection of grisly artefacts relating to some of the most notorious cases of the past two centuries: death masks of convicts hanged at Newgate; the ricin pellet that killed Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov in 1978; even the stove on which serial killer Dennis Nilsen boiled his victims.

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