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September 2016: Rainham guarding

05TH SEPTEMBER 2016

In the September 2016 print issue of Professional Security magazine, we report from parts of London not normally featured, to hear about the real, but unglamorous issues faced by security people on the front line. First, Mark Rowe goes to Rainham, on the border of London and Essex.

It was the day after IFSEC, and by chance the day - that historic Friday - that we heard that the country had voted to leave the European Union. As a train took me out of Fenchurch Street, I could faintly hear - whether the train was broadcasting it or another traveller, I don't know - David Cameron's resignation speech as prime minister. It felt appropriate - in one sense; I don't want to link the vote on the EU to these stories, nor did politics crop up on my visits. It felt appropriate in that the no-vote came as such a surprise - to the mass media and the political classes. Fancy, that they could be surprised by what the people thought!? That day I went to two unfashionable parts of the capital - which had, as an aside, against the national trend voted to stay in the EU, remember - and to hear about some unfashionable subjects: first, security on industrial estates; later preventing crime and disorder in pubs and clubs, or what more tastefully is called the night-time economy.

If you want something doing ...

They say that a picture paints a thousand words; suffice to say that this part of the Rainham - and it's no different from many other similar business parks - has had to resort to the bluntest and frankly ugliest methods to deter and prevent incursion by travellers. As so often, the story was that if businesses want something securing, they have to look to themselves.

More in the September 2016 print issue of Professional Security, from page 42.

Since the article, a guard there has been assaulted and physically removed from his site by force, and then fly-tipping over two weeks causing damage estimated at £60,000. Barking & Dagenham Chamber of Commerce is arranging a meeting on September 30 to discuss travellers, between businesses of the east London boroughs of Barking, Havering and Redbridge, police and local members of parliament.

Picture by Mark Rowe: off the A13 at Rainham, the landlord of an empty warehouse is keeping trespassers out with fences and more crudely mounds of earth.

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