Protecting remembrance and the festive season with a single installation in Liverpool

November and December are key times in Liverpool’s winter calendar, when the UK’s fifth most-visited city comes alive with activity and six-figure visitor numbers.

With the legacy of the successful Eurovision Song Contest extravaganza last May still creating a buzz around the city, Liverpool City Council is not only focused on making sure events run smoothly and are inclusive, but wants to make sure they are safe too.

Crowdguard was invited to tender to provide hostile vehicle mitigation in three city centre locations to protect Remembrance Day events in November, with equipment that could remain in place until  the New Year to protect Liverpool’s Christmas markets. The requirement was for all three locations to be pedestrian permeable, with two of the locations enabling controlled vehicular access.

As part of our bid submission, which was based on previous years’ specifications, we proposed carrying out a threat, vulnerability and risk assessment (TVRA), along with a vehicle dynamics assessment (VDA) as an added value service to ensure the specification was proportionate to the identified risk. Our team worked closely with the client and others stakeholders, including the police and the local counter terrorism security adviser (CTSA) to score the risk of vehicle impact to the designated locations.

Following the VDA, we reviewed our initial proposals, because it was apparent that there was a significant residual risk in one of the designated locations. After going out to market to assess a range of systems available, beyond our established HVM partnerships, we revised our initial proposal and specified a 20 tonne SafetyFlex Swing Arm Gate and a Hardstaff Hydraulic Lift Arm Gate for the locations that required controlled vehicular access, along with 62m of ATG Access Surface Guard. The specification confirms our commitment to protecting in partnership no matter what it takes to deliver the most appropriate and proportionate solution.

Council representatives signed off the change of specification and the pricing adjustments in light of the identified risk and the Crowdguard team installed the equipment in three locations: William Brown Street, Old Hay Market and Commutation Row. For installation of the SafetyFlex Swing Arm Gate, a 70t crane was required and we worked in partnership with Roadcraft Crane & Plant Hire Ltd to complete the deployment safely and efficiently.

The temporary HVM solutions provided an ideal pedestrian permeable security solution for the Remembrance Day events, and have remained in place to protect the Christmas markets, with de-rig scheduled for 4th January.

“Liverpool has a fantastic reputation as a welcoming city that can host major events safely and smoothly,” said Susan Gibson, Head of City Events at Culture Liverpool. “As a destination city, we attract visitors from near and far – especially during the festive season when people love the celebratory atmosphere.

“Event security is always a critical consideration in planning public events such as Remembrance Day and the Christmas markets. Crowdguard were proactive in advising us about our threat, vulnerability and risk, updating their specification to provide us with a proportionate solution that addressed our risk factors. They made sure all equipment was installed according to their method statement and the agreed timetable with service levels that contributed to our ability to deliver these outstanding events.”