Concerns over terrorism risk of Sheffield Remembrance Sunday traffic arrangements at Barker's Pool

Sheffield Council bosses have explained why they allowed traffic close to the city’s Remembrace Sunday event after concerns were raised by the public.

Tuesday, 16th November 2021, 3:25 pm

They have also stated they are now considering closing the road to traffic for next year’s event.

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One worried resident contacted The Star to raise their concerns over arrangements which allowed traffic to run close to the public and service personnel at the Remembrance Sunday event at the city’s war memorial on Barker’s Pool, until shortly before 11am, raising his fears over the safety of the decision.

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Crowds gathered in Sheffield city centre last weekend for the annual Remembrance event

The concerns come during a week when the terrorism alert across the country has been raised following the death of a man in a car bomb incident outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital on Sunday.

Ryszard Szumski, who had many veterans among his friends, said: “The crowd were angry and frustrated and the steward had no idea as to why the council had made this decision...to run traffic so close to the public and service personnel.

“Quite a few people close to us agreed that in light of events over the last few years it was a prime target for a terrorist incident. Unfortunately an event did occur in Liverpool around the same time.”

He said he had written to Sheffield Council leader Terry Fox about his concerns.

Coun Fox defended the arrangements for traffic on the day.

He said: “A temporary road closure was put in place during the march into Barker’s Pool during the Remembrance Day event on Sunday.

“Police were patrolling on site and movement of vehicles was slowed and controlled by stewards throughout. At no point were vehicles allowed to proceed past pedestrians without supervision from stewards. This decision was taken to allow controlled movement through the top side of Barker’s Pool as the other adjacent routes were closed due to building work.

“We were delighted to see such a fantastic turn out for the event and as part of the post event review, and considering the high footfall, we will look into closing the road to traffic for next year’s event. Public safety is a priority for us at all events and we hope that everyone was able to pay their respects, as planned, on Sunday.”