Reference Library – England – Hertfordshire
British military bases suffer a shocking 15 security breaches every week, the Ministry of Defence has admitted. There were 373 physical incidents at Army sites last year, with another 214 at Royal Navy stations, official figures revealed. Security breaches at RAF bases climbed from 19 in 2015 to 87 last year – a surge of 358%.
Authorities recorded almost 1,300 incidents at UK Armed Forces sites in just two years, soaring from 486 in 2015 to 806 in 2016.
Lib Dem leader Tim Farron said: These figures for security breaches should raise alarm, particularly in the security atmosphere we are currently living through.
The breaches came after cuts to the Ministry of Defence Police budget (file photo) (Photo: PA)
This is a massive spike these security breaches; these are a major national security risk.
The Government need to come forward with a plan to change this.
But more than that, defence ministers need to assure the public, Forces personnel and their families that they are taking this incredibly seriously. Incidents at Army bases rose from 322 to 373, while breaches at the Defence Equipment and Support trebled from 26 to 78. Breaches at Royal Navy stations rose from 88 to 214.
Worryingly, there were 44 physical incidents – about four a month – at Joint Forces Command in Hertfordshire and Permanent Joint Headquarters at Northwood. There were just 19 in 2015. The Defence Infrastructure Organisation was the only section to notice a fall in the number of breaches over 12 months, dropping from 11 to nine.
Lib Dem leader Tim Farron warned: “This is a massive spike” (Photo: Getty)
There was a single breach at head office and corporate services in both 2015 and 2016. The figures were revealed by Defence Minister Mark Lancaster following written Commons questions. Meanwhile, the Tories have slashed the number of officers in all branches of Armed Forces police, and cut the Ministry of Defence Police s budget.
The strength of the Royal Air Force Police fell from 1,479 to 1,160 between April 2010 and December 2016. The Royal Military Police manpower was sliced from 1,701 regulars to 1,529, while Royal Navy Police numbers dropped from 334 to 284. The Ministry of Defence Police s budget was sliced from 182.5million to 136.5million.
Stats showed there were just eight unauthorised entries to UK military sites in 2009, the last full year of a Labour government.
By 2015, they had rocketed to 45.
A police officer has quit the force he worked for to set up his own crime-fighting security firm.
Lewis Kearney, 32, resigned from his 12-year career with Essex Police1 because of his dismay at falling staff levels. He is now offering homeowners around-the-clock protection for the cost of 49.95 a month. He and his team will carry out rolling patrols and he has promised only to employ former cops.
It was really hard to leave, it s all I ve known .
I d been doing it since I was 19 and it was part of who I am.
Lewis Kearney’s patrol car looks similar to a police vehicle (Photo: Eastnews Press Agency)
It had just become impossible though, it was two steps forward and one step back.
My colleagues all feel the same, the police are haemorrhaging officers left right and centre.
I believe our services will greatly reduce the chances of someone becoming a victim of crimes such as burglar.
I believe we ll see a reduction in the numbers of crimes in the areas which we operate. Mr Kearney s new firm, Blueline Security, will begin providing private security patrols in Southend-on-Sea, Essex, from December 1. He has marked up his own vehicle with blue and yellow squares to mimic a police car but has remained within the law by not fitting blue lights.
Each of his patrol officers will be equipped with a body camera and security coverage will be provided seven days a week, 365 days a year. Other firms are already offering private security to residents but Mr Kearney s is the first to use only ex-police staff. He added: I personally policed Southend for several years and know it well, therefore I decided to launch the business there.
I plan to expand the patrols into the rest of Essex as soon as possible.
As police officers, we ve tried protecting entire towns before and we know how near impossible a task it is.
Mr Kearney believes his service will ‘greatly reduce’ his customers’ chances of being burgled (Photo: Eastnews Press Agency)
Only by making our services exclusive can we deliver the results our members deserve.
Some of the money paid by homeowners will be donated to the Essex Air Ambulance and RNLI charities. A spokesman for Essex Police said: Private security firms are not new and police forces across the country work with them, community groups and partner organisations to prevent and reduce crime.
However, it is important that the public are not confused, whether deliberately or not, about what these firms do.
Crimes can only be recorded, investigated and solved if they are reported to the police.
UK Crime Stats found that from September 2015 to September this year there were 11,854 burglaries3 in Essex. A Freedom of Information request revealed only 1.7% of burglaries in Chelmsford, Essex, were solved between January and July this year.
A total of 650 incidents were reported but 549 cases have already been closed with no suspect identified.
The Blues take on their Merseyside neighbours at the Etihad tomorrow night, kick-off at 5:30pm.
A sell-out crowd of around 55,000 are expected for the huge Premier League clash.
The authorities are currently on high-alert after the atrocities in the French capital last week in which 129 people were killed.
The country s national stadium was among the locations targeted with three suicide bombers striking close to the Stade de France.
It has since been reported that two of them tried to gain access to the stadium, where 80,000 fans were watching France take on Germany
Spectators on the pitch of the Stade de France stadium after explosions were heard outside
Earlier this week the Premier League said they would be meeting with all club bosses to review security measures following the tragedy.
And City have now issued advice to those attending tomorrow s game.
Fans have been urged not to bring bags to the game unless it is absolutely essential.
And anyone who does a bring a bag has been warned they will be searched.
The club says extra searches may cause delays for some fans and they have been urged to arrive earlier than normal.
Fans outside the Etihad before a game
In a message to supporters they said: Safety and security on a match day has always been of the upmost importance to the Club and will continue to be so.
Security measures are constantly reviewed to make sure we provide the best possible protection for everyone in the stadium.
Fans attending Saturday s match are advised to arrive early and not bring any bags unless essential.
All bags will be searched, in accordance with our regular match day security procedures, which may cause a delay in entering the stadium.
We thank fans for their patience.
Greater Manchester Police have already said they have extra armed officers ready to deployed, particularly to areas where large crowds gather.
However they have stressed there is no specific threat.
United travel to Vicarage Road to face Watford tomorrow lunch time, kick-off at 12:45pm.
When contacted by the M.E.N, the Hertfordshire club declined to comment in detail about security measures but said they would be complying with the guidance issued by the Premier League.
Before both matches the French national anthem, La Marseillaise, will be played with the words printed in the match programme so fans can join in, as they did before England s emotional friendly with France at Wembley on Tuesday.