Police to form 'protective ring' around Grenfell Tower for Notting Hill Carnival

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Police officers will form a protective ring around the burnt out remains Grenfell Tower to ensure revellers at Notting Hill Carnival “respect” the site.

Scotland Yard has announced a series of special measures to ensure the safety of carnival-goers throughout the weekend, including protecting the nearby Lancaster West estate.

Steel barriers and a ban on vehicles in the area have also been announced to combat the threat of terrorism, while officers will be stationed around the perimeter of the Carnival to check for weapons and acid.

But this year’s traditionally celebratory Carnival threatens to be overshadowed by the tragedy at Grenfell Tower, with the remains of the building still haunting north Kensington’s skyline.

Last month, Greg Hands, the Conservative MP for Chelsea and Fulham, wrote to London Mayor Sadiq Khan proposing moving the Carnival, questioning whether the event would be “appropriate”.

A minute’s silence will be held to honour the victims of June’s blaze, which officials believe killed at least 80 people.

It comes amid growing criticism of Scotland Yard over its policing tactics in the run up to Notting Hill Carnival, with Grime star Stormzy launching a barbed attack against chiefs for a series of drugs raids.

A three-week crackdown on crime ahead of the carnival saw 656 people arrested by 7am on Friday, and a large number of knives, guns, weapons and money seized.

The raid prompted the Croydon-based star to tweet: “How many drugs did you lot seize in the run up to Glastonbury or we only doing tweets like this for black events?”

In an interview with the Standard, David Musker, the commander in charge of policing the west London event, defended the raids.

He said: “What do the public expect of us? Last year we had 70 to 80 stabbings, four of them people who nearly lost their lives in attempted murders.”

He added: “We are going to be uncompromising in ensuring the safety and security of the public and if that means putting a significant effort into dealing with criminality before carnival I am unapologetic about that and will continue to do it.

Scotland Yard added security plans had been “thoroughly reviewed” after the Barcelona attack, in which 15 people died after being hit by a van.

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