An extensive policing plan is in place for the Capital over the coming Easter bank holiday weekend and officers will be working hard to ensure various religious, sporting and protest events can take place safely, whilst causing minimal disruption to local communities.
With a number of large events as well as the Easter holidays, we are expecting a high number of visitors to the Capital and officers are reminding the public to remain vigilant and to report anything that doesn’t feel right to police. While the UK terrorism threat level remains at ‘substantial’, dedicated counter-terrorism patrols by Project Servator officers have been taking place in busy locations across London throughout this week and these will continue into the weekend.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Andy Valentine, who is overseeing policing across London for the Easter weekend said: “We expect this weekend in London to be extremely busy, with families and communities celebrating Easter and other religious festivals, as well as a mix of major sporting events and various protests taking place in the Capital. We have an extensive policing plan in place to ensure these can take place safely, but I also want to be clear that we will not tolerate anyone who is intent on causing criminality, disorder or anti-social behaviour at any of the events.
“We have maintained a good dialogue with event holders, including protest organisers who are aware of our expectations in terms how individuals and groups conduct themselves and how their stewards can help us. We continue to provide them with information about what kind of activity would constitute a criminal offence and have made it clear that we will take swift and decisive action where crimes occur.
“We also know that many people – particularly those from Jewish and Muslim communities – remain concerned about hate crime and are worried about their safety and we recognise the cumulative impact of frequent protests.
“Local officers continue to meet with community representatives and we will have presence at places of worship right across London through the weekend and beyond. While we have an extensive plan in place to police the various major events, we also have plenty of officers who will be on duty to provide a local policing presence across all of our boroughs.
“This is possible, in part, because we are once again being supported by colleagues from other forces across the UK and I’d like to thank all of the officers and staff who will be working this weekend to keep London safe.”
On Good Friday, police will be present at the Rolling Thunder protest in relation to military veterans taking place in the central London area during the morning, as well as policing a number of football matches. On Saturday, there will be a policing plan in relation to the Boat Race in west London, which includes specialist officers from the Marine Police Unit, in addition to land-based officers. Policing plans are in place for a number of other football matches and officers will be present at the planned march by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign (PSC), which will be starting in Russell Square and ending in Trafalgar Square.
As with all protest events, the Met will continue to police without fear or favour, remain independent, impartial and uphold the law so people can exercise their democratic right to protest. However, this is balanced with the right for people, visitors and businesses to be able to move or operate freely. Equally, we are ensuring we are visible and responsive to our wider communities – particularly given the policing of these protests since October last year has required in excess of 35,000 officer shifts, and more than 5,200 officer rest days to be cancelled, and costs of more than £32.3 million.
Pre-conditions imposed this weekend:
Notice under section 12(3) Public Order Act 1986
Any person participating in the “Palestine Solidarity Campaign” procession must not deviate from the route specified on the map below and described as:
Procession starting in Woburn Place – Russell Square – Southampton Row – Kingsway – Aldwych – Strand – Duncannon Street – Trafalgar Square.

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