OPEN SECURITY TO BE INCREASED
BRITISH armed forces may join police in keeping this month’s Open Championship safe and secure.
A local terrorism expert says heightened security in the wake of the Manchester and London attacks should see a military presence at Royal Birkdale Golf Club, with more than 200,000 spectators expected to attend during the week.
Jonathan Cunningham, a former Head of Military Counter-Terrorism Operations over Belfast and senior planner for Iraq War 2003, told Southport’s Visiter newspaper security officials will be planning extra precautions for the tournament.
“Sports events and places like shopping centres where lots of people will be gathered will have military presence,” he said.
“The Open itself is an easier venue to protect because you have geographical security, although it’s a massive area and perimeter so that will be a concern.
“The biggest worry will be the transport network.”
In early May, R&A director of communications Mike Woodcock said: “We work very closely every year with our security advisers and the police and it’s something we review every year ahead of the championship.
“I don’t think we have any specific concerns this year but obviously we are aware of what’s going on more widely. We will be working very closely with our security advisers and the police to make sure everyone is safe and can enjoy the championship.”