The meeting is part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation’s (NATO) 70th Anniversary London Summit and will attract worldwide media interest.
Hertfordshire Constabulary and the Metropolitan Police Service have been liaising with the hotel and partner agencies including Watford Borough Council and the Canal and River Trust, for some considerable time. They are now in a position to share details of the measures being taken to minimise the impact on the community.
Most notably there will be several road, footpath and canal closures in place for either all or part of the event’s duration.
Affected roads include Grove Mill Lane, Fir Tree Hill, Langleybury Lane and a section of Hempstead Road from the Hunton Bridge Roundabout to Courtlands Drive.
The canal and its towpath from Lock 74 at Lady Capels Wharf to Lock 76 at Cassiobury Park will also close.
Peter Taylor, directly elected Mayor of Watford, said: “The eyes of the world will be on Watford on 4 December and I am confident the town will rise to the occasion. I appreciate that there is going to be disruption, which can only be expected when you are playing host to so many of the world’s leaders but I have confidence that the police will balance the need for effective security with keeping Watford and our residents on the move.”
Three Rivers District Council’s Chief Executive, David Hill, added: “We are delighted that the meeting is taking place in Three Rivers. It has been a great opportunity for working in partnership with other agencies to welcome the heads of state to the district.”
For those who still have questions after reading the FAQs on the Constabulary’s dedicated NATO web page, or do not have access to the internet, there will be a drop-in community engagement event so residents can speak to officers face to face.
This event will be at Tanners Wood Hall in School Mead, Abbots Langley, WD5 0LA between 7.30pm and 9pm on Thursday 21 November. Attendees can arrive at any point during the hour and a half and will be able to talk to police about how the plans may affect them.
Police will be resticting access , a bit like Bilderberg in 2013.
Watford Chief Inspector Matt Phillips said: “Whilst it is inevitable that such a high profile event will cause some disruption, we aim to ensure that any impact on the local residents and businesses is kept to an absolute minimum and are working closely with our partners to achieve this.
“We are now in a position to share information ahead of the event in order to allow the community the time to plan accordingly and mitigate the impact it may have on their day to day lives.
“Increased traffic congestion is anticipated therefore residents and visitors are asked to consider their plans, such as finding alternative means of transport or working from home.
“I’d like to thank the community in advance for their patience, understanding and support ahead of the event. Please expect a proportionate police presence in the vicinity of the closures throughout the event in order to facilitate access for residents and essential services.
“If you have a query or an issue during the event that needs immediate attention, you will be able to speak to officers who will be stationed at two community engagement checkpoints in both Three Rivers and Watford. The exact locations of these will be shared closer to the time of the event.”
The flying and use of drone equipment will also be prohibited for the duration of the event.
Those who cannot make this event and have further questions, or any information they believe is relevant to the police operation, can email NATO_communityqueries@herts.pnn.police.uk.
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