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policebacks400A dedicated policing plan is in place to help residents and visitors stay safe on the Isle of Wight during one of its busiest times of the year – the Isle of Wight Festival.

Seaclose Park in Newport is the destination for large numbers of people gathering to enjoy the Isle of Wight Festival from today (Wednesday) until late on Monday.

Hampshire Constabulary is maintaining its close co-operation with festival organisers ‘Solo’ and partner agencies to keep crime as low as possible.

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Hampshire Constabulary’s Isle of Wight Festival police commander Chief Inspector Simon Dodds said:

“The Isle of Wight Festival has established a reputation for having low crime and a friendly atmosphere for more than a decade.

“We want festival-goers to enjoy themselves safely again this year, and we want any criminals to be warned off by our regular rigorous approach to protecting the island.

“As in previous years police will be patrolling the site in partnership with security staff to ensure a safe festival.”

Hampshire Constabulary’s Crime Prevention Advisor said:

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“Our work to help protect people is well underway before the festival even begins.

“We’ve been doing a lot of work with our partners and via social media channels to offer crime prevention advice. Please take note of this and help us to keep crime levels low again at this year’s event.

“Upon arrival, festival-goers are invited to spend time at our festival police station in Seaclose Park near the foot entrance to the site where we’ll be offering further interactive ways to stay safe all throughout the festival.

“You can follow our @FestivalCop Twitter channel and #FestivalSafe hashtag to pick up handy pieces of personal safety advice via social media.”

For more crime prevention advice, visit the Festival page of Hampshire Constabulary’s website at

policingfestivalHampshire Constabulary’s Roads Policing Unit (RPU) Inspector Steve Wakeford said:

“Teamwork involving all agencies will remain crucial to keeping residents and visitors on the move safely.”

“Some delays will be inevitable so I would remind all road users to allow more time for their journeys during the week of the festival.

“Motorists putting lives at risk on the roads will be dealt with robustly by my officers who will be on regular patrols”.

Speaking about protecting people from illegal drugs and new psychoactive substances, Chief Inspector Simon Dodds said:

“The Isle of Wight Festival organisers are retaining a clear tough stance against illegal drugs. Their use and sale is not condoned and not tolerated at the festival, where people suspected of carrying and supplying illegal drugs will be searched and arrested where necessary.

“Police officers and security staff will be targeting those involved in the supply and possession of illegal substances and will take robust action when necessary which may include arrest or ejection from the festival site.”

Island residents are being reassured that policing Newport and the rest of the Isle of Wight remains a priority. Chief Inspector Simon Dodds added:

“The safety and security of people elsewhere on the Isle of Wight remains an equally essential priority for local policing.

“Our response to emergencies, crime and disorder across the rest of the island will be the same. Anyone should call 999 in an emergency as usual .

“In Newport, extra high-visibility patrols will again be focused on the Fairlee Road area and surrounding side roads to provide reassurance and responses to any concerns raised by residents.

“They can call on the services of their regular officers and PCSOs from the local Newport Safer Neighbourhoods team (SNT)”.

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