July 23 2014 Latest news:
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Almost 200 police officers from Norfolk will be in London to help ensure the Olympics remain a safe and stunning spectacle for all.
Final preparations are being put in place for one of the biggest national security operations ever to be carried out, with officers from Norfolk expected to join colleagues from across the country in London and at other Games venues in the coming days.
Norfolk will support the operation by providing a total of 188 of the force’s 1,530 officers to assist for a total of 57 days of the games.
Final planning for deployments is under way, but the majority of officers will assist the Metropolitan Police and Dorset police, which have the largest Games operations. The sailing competitions are taking place off the Dorset coast.
The commitment of the force varies each day, ranging from a maximum of about 71 officers to as low as just one officer on other days.
"It’s a huge national event, the sort of operational challenge officers will relish and look forward to. We’re not short of people wanting to go down there, it’s just great to be part of it."
While the majority of officers travelling to police the games are general beat officers, providing their usual professional service and working alongside the public, there is also a requirement for some specialist skilled officers to assist.
Phil Gormley, chief constable of Norfolk police, pictured, said the force was pleased to be able to assist by sending officers to help police the Games.
He said: “It’s a huge national event, the sort of operational challenge officers will relish and look forward to. We’re not short of people wanting to go down there, it’s just great to be part of it.”
With more than 180 police officers heading to London during the Games – although not all at the same time – Mr Gormley wanted to reassure people living in Norfolk that the force has sufficient cover to police the county.
He said: “There’s a whole range of levers which mean we can fix the amount of resource we provide locally, regionally and nationally.”
Norfolk has adopted a range of measures to maximise the number of officers available to assist with the Games but also to continue policing across the force area.
This has included working closely with Suffolk Constabulary through existing collaborative arrangements.
This means they can balance the contributions from the two forces to help maintain local policing arrangements.
Chief Superintendent Bob Scully said: “The public can be reassured that, during the Games, we will be able to continue providing the same high standards of service to local communities, with the same level of response.
“In other words, it will be ‘business as usual’.”
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The last installment of London Calling is in tonight’s Norwich Evening News.