Ministry of Defence Police (MDP) officers have ensured the protection of not only you, the visitors, but of the VIPs who have attended the airshow throughout the week.

The force has a number of specialist Personal Protection Officers (PPOs) whose designated task is to ensure the safety of the ‘principal' during his or her visit.

This week they have looked after four members of the British royal family and a number of government ministers as well as other VIP visitors.



The seven PPOs, all of whom are armed, provide close personal protection from the ‘principal's' arrival through to departure.

Their professionalism allows them to perform the task inconspicuously and without disruption to the itinerary.

Under the control of Chief Inspector Dave Vaughn, who is also officer in charge of the bomb squads, vehicle searches and VIP escorts, the PPOs have each received nine weeks dedicated training covering all aspects of protection work including specialist driving skills. Policing for the Show has been under the overall command of Superintendent Ivor Richards and his deputy Chief Inspector Denzil John.

They must be prepared for all eventualities, including emergencies and disasters. Both officers attend a whole host of detailed meetings with sponsors and emergency services in the months running up to the show.

The MDP have been responsible for the internal policing and security of the Show since its inauguration in 1948.



In recent years financial constraints have meant the detachment has reduced considerably, while the task itself has remained similar in size.

This year, in addition to a considerable increase in visitor numbers, they have had to deal with demonstrators against the arms trade.

Indeed the MDP remains aware that the threat of protest remains constant, particularly during the public days at the weekend.

MDP Chief Constable Walter Boreham, visited the Show yesterday and he is proud of the professional manner in which his officers carry out the full range of policing requirements.

"The MDP has vast experience in policing large public events, particularly the Farnborough International Air Show.

"They are a versatile professional force who regard public safety as their highest priority," he says.



Source: Flight Daily News