Brian Sims

Counter Terrorism Policing encourages live music fans to #BeSafeBeSound

COUNTER TERRORISM Policing is working with the UK’s live music industry this summer and beyond as live music fans are being asked to play their part in keeping people safe.

UK Music, Festival Republic and The O2 are among those supporting Counter Terrorism Policing’s established #BeSafeBeSound campaign, which highlights the importance of reporting suspicious activity.

Laurence Taylor, Counter Terrorism Policing’s senior national co-ordinator for Protect and Prepare, explained: “The terrorist threat remains a reality. Since 2017, we’ve disrupted almost 40 late-stage terror attacks alongside our colleagues at MI5.”

While there’s no specific intelligence to indicate an increased threat to live music events, the UK’s terrorism threat level remains at substantial. “Our casework indicates that large events remain potentially attractive targets to terrorists,” stated Taylor. “It’s absolutely vital that members of the public are vigilant this summer. We have a brilliant range of partners and organisations on board who are helping us to make sure live music fans know what to do if they see something that doesn’t feel right. Our advice is to always tell security or speak to the police.”

Taylor continued: “While we are working around the clock to detect new threats and disrupt terrorist activity, the intelligence and information we receive from the public should not be underestimated. Around one-fifth of the online reports and calls we receive every year are particularly useful to us. They turn into arrests, build intelligence pictures or kick-start new investigations.”

Hostile reconnaissance

Created back in 2021, #BeSafeBeSound urges music lovers to stay alert to any signs of hostile reconnaissance and follow safety advice or security procedures in place at events and venues.

Since its launch, the campaign has reached over ten million individuals in the UK via social media and other platforms.

Over 60 venues, festivals and organisations are now backing the campaign, which will be seen at events across the UK in the coming weeks and beyond. These include many of the most recognisable festivals and venues in the UK, among them The O2, Leeds and Reading, Creamields, the Utilita Arena in Newcastle, Creamfields, TRNSMT, O2 Academy venues, Wireless, Isle of Wight, First Direct Arena in Leeds, Parklife, the OVO Hydro in Glasgow, Wembley Arena and many more.

Remaining vigilant 

UK Music CEO Jamie Njoku-Goodwin observed: “We all want live music events to be as safe as possible. UK Music is delighted to support the #BeSafeBeSound campaign.”

According to Njoku-Goodwin: “Each of us has a role to play in keeping each other safe at concerts and festivals, whether that’s fans staying vigilant and reporting suspicious activity, or event organisers sharing important security messages with their audiences. While the police and other agencies are working hard to protect us, we all have a responsibility to do what we can to help keep each other safe at live events.”

#BeSafeBeSound is also being supported by the Night Czar for London, namely Amy Lamé, who noted: “The capital’s live music events are the envy of the world and everyone who attends has the right to enjoy them. I’m supporting the #BeSafeBeSound campaign in order to highlight the importance of reporting anything suspicious to police officers or security staff.”

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