Crime cut in half as police celebrate success off the Silverstone track

2011 British Grand Prix - Sunday'Silverstone, Northamptonshire, England'10th July 2011'Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull Racing RB7 Renault, 2nd position, Mark Webber, Red Bull Racing RB7 Renault, 3rd position, Fernando Alonso, Ferrari 150° Italia, 1st position, Felipe Massa, Ferrari 150° Italia, 5th position, and the rest of the field head in to the first. corner. Action. Start. 'Photo: Pirelli/LAT Photographic'ref: Digital Image C27C0468
2011 British Grand Prix - Sunday'Silverstone, Northamptonshire, England'10th July 2011'Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull Racing RB7 Renault, 2nd position, Mark Webber, Red Bull Racing RB7 Renault, 3rd position, Fernando Alonso, Ferrari 150° Italia, 1st position, Felipe Massa, Ferrari 150° Italia, 5th position, and the rest of the field head in to the first. corner. Action. Start. 'Photo: Pirelli/LAT Photographic'ref: Digital Image C27C0468

CRIME at this year’s Grand Prix has halved from last year.

Although the figures are still to be finalised Northamptonshire Police are heralding their operation over the three day event as a success.

Fewer than 20 crimes had been booked on by the time the chequered flag fell on Fernando Alonso’s win in the Formula One showpiece.

In all, 300,000 spectators attendeda Silverstone over the weekend and 122,000 on raceday itself.

Event commander Chief Inspector Sean Bell said he was delighted with the outcome and paid tribute to the organisation and teamwork of police and partners across the field.

The early indications are that crimes were halved in comparison to last year’s event and that is extremely pleasing when you consider the huge numbers who came to Silverstone to watch the racing,” he said.

“A number of arrests were made, in the main related to alcohol-influenced issues, but we pride ourselves on the fact that Silverstone has now been a low-crime event for several years.

“There were a handful of thefts on the campsites but overall our crime prevention messages and high-visibility patrols had the desired effect.

“Traffic in and out of the circuit by and large ran smoothly, not withstanding pinch points at certain times down to the sheer volume of traffic.”

The policing plan this year had to factor in the new facilities at Silverstone, notably the new Wing pit and paddock complex built in a different part of the circuit.

The novelty factor of the Wing attracted great interest from spectators and VIP visitors and crowd control around the new complex was a key part of the plan. Silverstone this year boasted two heliports and heightened security measures in light of Prince Harry’s arrival at the circuit on the morning of the race.

And Silverstone’s plan to allow spectators onto the track at the conclusion of the Grand Prix presented another issue for police.

Mr Bell added: “There were a number of challenges to be overcome and all required considerable planning.

“The circuit’s decision to allow fans onto the track came quite late in the day and we had a look at it to ensure it was aligned with other aspects of the policing plan and public safety was assured.

“This is likely to become a feature in future Grands Prix at Silverstone and, if this is the intention, we will take account of this aspect in next year’s planning so as to ensure as many people as possible can watch the podium celebrations comfortably and safely.”

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