On the eve of ST. PAUL’S CARNIVAL (or St. Paul’s Festival for our older readers) word reaches us that Chief Constable NICK ‘GRIPPER’ GARGAN has demanded that organisers flood the streets of the inner city district with FORMER SQUADDIES!
The top cop – whose SHADOWY time at the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS) and then later at the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) is thought to touch on the ‘police spy’ scandal – threatened to pull Avon & Somerset Constabulary support from the all-day community event, unless ex-military security was used.
It follows similar STRONGARM TACTICS used by A&S to bully Carnival in previous years, including telling committee members that they would be held responsible for any trouble at the huge event, which draws scores of thousands from across Bristol and beyond – or even prosecuted.
Meanwhile in true nice cop/nasty cop fashion, on Thursday the force’s public relations gurus released a fluffy statement (entitled ‘Cops calypso at Carnival’) about how “officers and PCSOs will be enjoying the sounds, sights and smells of St Pauls Carnival with party-goers this Saturday.”
There was of course no mention of bully-boy Gargan’s behind-the-scenes attempts to militarise the streets of BS2, though Bristol’s finest bogling bobby, district commander Chief Superintendent Jon Stratford, was quoted as saying:
Carnival is set to be even bigger and better than ever this year. The sun is set to shine and carnival organisers have been working hard with us for months to make sure it’s a safe and successful event.
Well, that’s one way of putting it!