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Armed police will be among teams undertaking security response training at Bluewater

Emergency services including armed officers will be carrying out training exercises at Bluewater shopping centre today.

Police say they will be working alongside fire service and ambulance crews to test their combined response to potential security alerts, with armed and unarmed officers taking part.

Members of the public are advised they might see emergency teams at Bluewater and hear activity between 8pm tonight and 4am tomorrow, but should not be alarmed.

Armed police. Picture; Gerry Warren FM3158126 (1657707)
Armed police. Picture; Gerry Warren FM3158126 (1657707)

Assistant Chief Constable Tony Blaker of Kent Police said: "It is important to point out that this training exercise, which has been in the planning stages since July 2017, is not in response to any specific intelligence suggesting Bluewater or anywhere else in Kent is at risk.

"We regularly hold such exercises at various locations across the county, covering a wide range of scenarios. It provides invaluable training and experience for all participants.

"During this exercise Kent Police has organised resources accordingly to ensure it will be business as usual, with officers on duty as normal."

The training exercise will be held at Bluewater. Stock image
The training exercise will be held at Bluewater. Stock image

Robert Goodman, General Manager at Bluewater, said: "Bluewater is assisting Kent Police by hosting its emergency services training exercise, which is part of an ongoing series of similar exercises taking place across Kent and the UK.

"We would like to reassure guests that the training will take place outside of Bluewater opening hours, however our restaurants will be closing at 8pm on this occasion."

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