The West Midlands force have reassured local people that the region’s policing will not be affected during the Games.
With the London Olympics approaching rapidly, West Midlands Police has been working with national colleagues to help with what will be the largest ever pre-planned policing operation, while also ensuring that core policing for local communities continues unharmed.
Overseen by Assistant Commissioner Chris Allison, the National Olympic Security Coordinator responsible for security operations during the Games, 51 forces have worked together to resource the 105-day long national policing, which begins on 4th June and runs until 16th September.
In addition to policing Olympic football matches at the City of Coventry Stadium, West Midlands Police will be providing officers to assist other forces for a total of 101 days. Final planning for their deployments is underway, with the majority of officers due to assist the Metropolitan Police and Dorset Police, which have the largest Games operations.
The commitment of the force is due to see up to 371 WMP officers on Olympic duty on any one day, helping to keep the Games safe and secure. In addition to regular beat officers, these will include dog units, officers trained in public order, specialist search teams, firearms officers and protection officers, who will all assist with this complex operation.
However, the force wishes to reassure local people that they will still be able to provide comprehensive policing across the West Midlands during this period. Annual leave has been restricted, non-essential training postponed and the Special Constabulary will all play their role.
Commenting on the operation, Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth said: “West Midlands Police is committed to contributing officers to the policing operation for the Games. We anticipate that a total of 828 individual officers will work on Games-related duties outside the West Midlands region, but our contribution will vary each day. Core policing across the West Midlands will not suffer and disruption will be minimised. We will also have the resilience and capacity to deal with unexpected major incidents outside of the policing the Games.
“West Midlands Police has substantial experience in policing major global events. Our top priority is to keep our communities safe and protect them from harm.”
The additional expense incurred in sending West Midlands officers to help other forces during the operation will be met by the Home Office budget for Olympics safety and security, although the total cost will not be known until the Games have finished.