West Mercia Police Help The Olympic Effort
With less than 70 days until the start of the London 2012 Games, West Mercia Police has been working with national colleagues to help resource what will be the largest ever pre-planned policing operation, while also ensuring that core policing for our communities continues.
Overseen by Assistant Commissioner Chris Allison (Metropolitan Police), the National Olympic Security Coordinator, 51 forces have worked together to resource the 105-day long national policing initiative, which begins on 4 June and runs until 16 September.
West Mercia Police will support the operation by providing officers to assist for a total of 62 days. Final planning for their deployments is underway, but the majority of officers will assist the Metropolitan Police and Dorset Police, which have the largest Games operations.
The commitment of the force varies each day, ranging from a maximum of around 121 officers to as low as just two officers on other days. In total, but not on one day, around 239 individual officers from West Mercia Police will contribute to keeping the Games safe and secure.
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.
West Mercia Police will be lending its renowned expertise from the public order unit, dog unit, firearms officers, protection officers, marine skilled officers and motorcycle escort officers to assist with this complex operation.
West Mercia Police 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. Annual leave has been restricted across the service, non-essential training has been postponed and the Special Constabulary and volunteers will play their role.
Assistant Chief Constable Guy Rutter, of West Mercia Police, said: "We are proud that our officers are part of the skilled team who will police the Games, this is a once-in-a- generation opportunity. We would like to reassure the residents of West Mercia that we have a good level of officers and staff remaining in our force area to maintain core policing. We remain committed to serving and protecting our communities. Local people should not notice any depreciation in the service we provide. We look forward to welcoming the torch to West Mercia later this week."
Assistant Commissioner Chris Allison (Metropolitan Police), the National Olympic Security Coordinator, said: "Chief Constables and forces have worked together, contributing fairly to meet the incredible demand of the Games. I'm happy to say that every force has played its part. It's down to the continued cooperation and assistance of forces and the enthusiasm of officers, that we have been able to meet this extraordinary resourcing demand.
"All 51 forces are playing a role to deliver a fantastic summer of celebration, yet our planning has also ensured that our core policing continues, keeping our communities safe. In addition, we maintain our regional resilience, able to manage major incidents or investigations and respond to contingencies outside of the Games wherever necessary.
"The summer of 2012 will be a busy and challenging time for the British police service, but with confidence and pride I can say that we have the officers we need to keep the Games and our wider communities safe and secure."