Surrey Police successfully carried out one of its biggest policing operations at the Epsom Derby Festival at the weekend (2 and 3 June).
The event, which took place at Epsom Downs Racecourse, began with Ladies Day on Friday, 2 June, followed by the Derby Day on Saturday, 3 June. The two-day event saw tens of thousands of attendees across the two days, as well as millions of spectators watching from around the globe.
Officers and staff from Surrey Police and Sussex Police were involved in the large-scale operation, with planning having taken place throughout the year to ensure that we were able to help keep the public safe.
Specialist teams worked to support officers on the ground, including firearms, intelligence and drone operators.
A total of 39 arrests were made over the course of the two days. Thirty-one of these arrests were made in connection with planned criminal activity at the Epsom Derby Festival, including two women who were quickly detained moments before they were able to get onto the track. Thirty have since been released on bail pending further enquiries.
Ben Newman, 32, of Homerton High Street in Hackney, has been charged with causing public nuisance. He has been remanded and is due to appear at Guildford Magistrates’ Court tomorrow (Monday, 5 June).
Chief Superintendent Clive Davies, who was in charge of the policing operation for the Epsom Derby, said: “Each year we look forward to keeping the public safe at one of Surrey’s biggest events. In our 24th year of policing the Epsom Derby, we are pleased to say we were able to do just that.
“I am incredibly proud of every single officer, staff member and volunteer who worked in the run-up to the event and at the event itself. They played a vital role in protecting the public and preventing and responding to criminality.
“We absolutely support people’s rights to peacefully protest, but we differentiate between this and unacceptable criminal behaviour.
“We were one of a number of organisations involved in planning and implementation of this multi-agency operation, and I would like to thank the event organisers and our partner agencies for their support and commitment to delivering a safe event.”
(Surrey Police press release ends)
The BBC reported:
“A man was seen being bundled to the floor by police and security guards during the opening seconds of the prestigious race. He was quickly removed from the course while being jeered by spectators. The race was unaffected.
The protest went ahead despite the Jockey Club, which runs the event, being granted a court injunction prohibiting the group Animal Rising from disrupting it. The group had publicly threatened to stop the main race going ahead, saying it wanted to raise awareness about animal rights.
Mr Newman was one of 31 people arrested in connection with the planned protests, including 12 on the racecourse grounds and 19 during a pre-emptive operation in the hours before it began.
Surrey Police said two women were arrested after being “quickly detained moments before they were able to get on to the track”.
Mr Newman is the only protester to face a charge so far. The remaining 30 people have been released on bail pending further inquiries, police said.”