Wiltshire police increase patrols ahead of tonight's England match
Wiltshire police will have extra officers on duty tonight ahead of England’s World Cup game against Uruguay, which kicks off at 8pm tonight.
Sgt James Brain, of Trowbridge and Bradford on Avon police, said: “Tonight we are expecting more people out on the streets and more people drinking earlier in the day.
“Wiltshire Police wants fans to enjoy the World Cup but to not spoil it by drinking excessively.
“There will be additional officers out across Wiltshire and Swindon tonight to ensure that there is a known police presence and to respond quickly and effectively to any reported incidents.”
Violence flared in Warminster in the early hours of Sunday following England’s opening match against Italy, which started around 11pm.
This resulted in the arrests of three people, one for affray and two for assault. A number of other suspects are also sought.
Inspector Alan Webb said: “These incidents may have been linked to additional alcohol consumption following the England football match. However this is no excuse and will not be tolerated.”
Elsewhere, officers in Trowbridge, Bradford on Avon, Westbury and Melksham said there were no World Cup-related incidents on Saturday in their towns following England’s 2-1 defeat to Italy.
There was a fight in Devizes Market Place, in which two police officers were injured, but it happened two hours after the game ended and police are not linking it to the World Cup.
Pubs showing the football in the county did benefit from increased trade, after many applied for a licence extension to stay open during late games.
Debbie Mann, The Pilot, Bowerhill, said: “It was busy, and although it was not successful in the end for the team, we had a lot of people in.” Keith young, Barman at the Ludlow Arms in Westbury, said: “The place was absolutely packed and the atmosphere was electric. People were disappointed that England had lost but they had played well.”
Pete Bartley, co-owner of Prestbury sports bar, Warminster, said: “Most people came out later on. It was a good night with a good atmosphere.”