Belfast Telegraph

Security plea for Derry City of Culture

By Brendan McDaid

The PSNI in Londonderry has confirmed it is currently examining levels of security needed for the 2013 celebrations.

Derry Policing and Community Safety Partnership chairman Thomas Conway said police have been asked to bid for additional funding for resources, given the expected influx of visitors and ongoing dissident threat.

Derry's population is expected to quadruple during the All Ireland Fleadh and the dozens of other high profile festivals during the City of Culture year.

Mr Conway warned that security requirements around such large-scale events must not leave a vacuum in other areas, such as community policing.

The SDLP councillor said: “We want to make sure with the mass of events taking place that our police officers, community police officers, who have done so much work to get to know their beats, that all those people are not extracted for big events.“

Foyle Area Commander Chief Insp Jon Burrows said that police were already examining the requirements for next year.

“We are certainly making preparations to ensure we have the appropriate resources to deal with increased demand.

“I am very conscious we counter any risk to increased crime.”

Mr Conway said he was confident the resources would be acquired “sooner rather than later”.

Meanwhile Fiona Kane has been appointed to head the marketing team for the City of Culture.

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