Police praise 123,000 torch spectators

Olympic Torch: Wellingborough:  Olympic Torch 'Crowds ''Monday 2nd July, 2012
Olympic Torch: Wellingborough: Olympic Torch 'Crowds ''Monday 2nd July, 2012
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Northamptonshire Police has described the Olympic Torch Relay operation as an overwhelming success.

The Flame’s passage witnessed by 123,000 people through Northampton, Wellingborough, Isham, Kettering, Geddington, Corby and Dingley passed without incident.

In addition, no Relay-related crimes were reported between 10am and 3.30pm, when the Flame was in the county.

In spite of light rain for much of the day, large numbers of spectators turned out to see the Torch Relay.

And the overwhelming feedback received from members of the public was ‘we had a great time and we had fun!’

Assistant Chief Constable Martin Jelley said that officers and staff had played a big part in making sure that Flame followers enjoyed their day out.

He said: “The people who have made this a real success on the ground have been the officers, PCSOs and special constables who have lined the streets and entertained the crowds.

“I have been impressed with the great feedback we have received on our social media sites. It is clear that officers and staff joined in with the children who lined the route and helped them enjoy the day even more.”

A total of 319 officers, including those based in the Force Control Room, were on Olympic Torch Relay duty.

The Torch relay operation was the largest single-day planned operation since the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales in September 1997.

Superintendent Sean Bell, the Force’s head of specialist operations, was responsible for securing the safe passage of the Olympic Flame through Northamptonshire.

He said: “The planning for this operation was very detailed and has taken place over several months in what has been a very busy year for major events.

“We adopted a robust working partnership with our colleagues in local government and the blue light services to ensure we all knew what had to be done and when we had to do it.

“We held an exercise which planned for worse-case scenarios and fortunately we weren’t put to the test.

“The behaviour of those who turned out to watch was exemplary and what pleased me is that everyone on the route, be it the runners, spectators and our officers, clearly had a lot of fun.

“Our local officers played a major part in ensuring this was the case and increased the satisfaction derived from the operational success.”

Crowd estimates in the seven locations, as provided by the local authorities, were as follows:

Northampton 46,000

Wellingborough 10,000

Isham 500

Kettering 40,000

Geddington 1,000

Corby 25,000

Dingley 500