A royal appointment to secure the celebrations for the King’s Coronation

A record 11,500 police officers were deployed to guard the coronation of king Charles III, making the event the UK’s biggest ever security operation.

Alongside the main events at Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace and the route for the King’s carriage, both the capital and the country were celebrating with a whole host of street parties, big screen broadcasts and festivities. Crowdguard was proud to protect many of these events from the threat of vehicle as a weapon attacks or vehicle incursions.

The involvement of the Crowdguard team helping event organisers with security and counter terrorism planning for these events began several months in advance, with risk assessment advice to ensure appropriate and proportionate specification of hostile vehicle mitigation systems. It was extremely important that the security strategy supported the atmosphere of celebration and sense of occasion, while protecting people from vehicles, so we worked closely with our customers to achieve a balance between security, practicality and aesthetics. In many locations, a key element of this was using coronation branding to customise the hostile vehicle mitigation systems, integrating them with the decorations used to mark the event area.

Battersea Power Station King’s Coronation Party

At Battersea Power Station, The King’s Coronation Party included an opportunity to enjoy a picnic while watching the coronation service and procession on the big screens in Power Station Park, adjacent to the River Thames. The celebration also included a host of entertainment, and food and drink pop-ups.

Our teams of technicians installed ATG Surface Guard, delivering aesthetically pleasing protection for pedestrians, to keep people safe from vehicle incursions, while ensuring that emergency services or authorised vehicles could access the area quickly if required. This versatile, pedestrian permeable HVM system also allowed roads to be completely reopened between scheduled events. The totally surface mounted, modular Surface Guard system meant that Crowdguard technicians could de-rig the event protection just as quickly, opening the roads up as usual as soon as the coronation party ended on 8th May.

King’s Road Street Party

Meanwhile, for the King’s Coronation Party on the King’s Road in Chelsea, the Crowdguard team carried out a vehicle dynamics assessment (VDA) weeks in advance to inform a practical and proportionate HVM product proposal. Here, the brief included pedestrianisation of road areas and restricting pavement access in some locations, while protecting road closures from vehicle incursions, and enabling pedestrian permeability for main pedestrian routes.

Our solution was to install the rapid deployment RB50 surface mounted HVM system for the road closures, as this can be installed, removed or reconfigured quickly and easily. For restricted access pavement areas, we deployed The Claw; a drop-and-go HVM system, which offered a fantastic branding opportunity for the event. We also deployed the ARX Stopper!™ as pedestrian permeable HVM for main pedestrian routes, allowing people to move safely but freely around the event location.

In all, we installed 73m of HVM protection for the King’s Road event across six locations. The whole installation was achieved to our strict quality assurance standards within just four hours, by only four experienced technicians.

Gloucester Road Coronation party

We worked with the same event organisers, Fay Campbell Events, to deliver the HVM security for the Gloucester Road Coronation Street Party on Sunday 7th May in the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.

Located just a short walk from Kensington Palace, this street party included food and drink, live acts, face painting and a rendition of the national anthem.

Once again, we carried out a VDA to inform the specification of appropriate and proportionate security for the event and deployed both RB50 and ARX Stopper!™ in three locations; two on Gloucester Road and one on Kynance Mews.

The partnership between Crowdguard and Fay Campbell Events was very successful and Fay Campbell commented: “It has been a joy to work with such a professional team to asses provide and deploy the Hostile Vehicle Mitigation for our Kings Road Coronation Events, I felt assured that the guests were safe and the installation and operatives were extremely professional, we would recommend Crowdguard for your HVM needs.”

A tailored approach

It was a very busy weekend, with so many events to protect, each with its own threat, vulnerability and risk profile, requiring a tailored risk mitigation strategy and appropriate, proportionate HVM specification. Just like Crowdguard’s security deployments over the coronation weekend, the coronation itself ran like clockwork thanks to all the work that had gone on in advance behind the scenes, and it was a proud, momentous occasion for us all.

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