‘Ring of steel’ to pro­tect Lon­don’s sky­scrapers

Manned check­points are pro­posed to pre­vent ter­ror at­tacks

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Amita Joshi amita.joshi@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

MANNED check­points as part of a new ‘Ring of Steel’ will pro­tect Lon­don’s sky­scrapers for the first time in 24 years.

In a se­cu­rity crack­down pro­posed by MI5 and counter ter­ror­ism po­lice, a se­ries of mea­sures are to be in­tro­duced to pre­vent ter­ror at­tacks on the city’s new­est sky­scrapers.

The £5 mil­lion move in­cludes manned check­points, crash proof bar­ri­cades and ris­ing street bol­lards.

The pro­posal could be com­pleted by 2022 around the Liver­pool Street, Bank of Eng­land and Fenchurch Street area. The last time manned check­points were used was 1992 af­ter the IRA had bombed Baltic Ex­change.

Mea­sures to pro­tect Lon­don’s fi­nan­cial hub were rec­om­mended fol­low­ing the Ber­lin Christ­mas mar­ket ter­ror at­tack last month, which left 12 peo­ple dead and 49 in­jured.

Ac­cord­ing to a Cor­po­ra­tion of Lon­don re­port, the Bank of the Eng­land lo­ca­tion was a place where it “had iden­ti­fied that the area was highly sen­si­tive to a hos­tile ve­hi­cle-borne se­cu­rity threat”.

Will Ged­des, founder of In­ter­na­tional Cor­po­rate Pro­tec­tion, said: “Al­though we’ve seen of late ‘lo-fi type’ at­tacks, like the Ber­lin Christ­mas mar­ket where a lorry was hi­jacked and driven into a crowded area, we can­not dis­count the type of at­tack that will in­clude a large truck packed with ex­plo­sives.”

Fund­ing for the project has not yet been fi­nalised, but some has been raised by busi­nesses in the area, and other money will come from new de­vel­op­ers when new sky­scrapers are built in the area.

Fol­low­ing the at­tack at the Christ­mas mar­ket in Ber­lin, the Met Po­lice said be­fore Christ­mas that it had re­viewed its plans.

A state­ment from the force said: “The Met­ro­pol­i­tan Po­lice has de­tailed plans for pro­tect­ing pub­lic events over the Christ­mas and New Year pe­riod.

“These al­ready recog­nise that the threat level is at ‘se­vere’, mean­ing an at­tack is highly likely, and have con­sid­ered a range of threats, in­clud­ing the use of large ve­hi­cles.

“As a mat­ter of rou­tine, as a pre­cau­tion, we re­view our plans af­ter at­tacks over­seas, and we are do­ing so at present fol­low­ing the aw­ful in­ci­dents in Ber­lin and Ankara.”

Photo: Gareth Cat­ter­mole/Getty Im­ages

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