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British Transport Police urge racegoers to heed vital advice before this year’s Aintree Grand National Festival


Aintree 2018

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As the runners and riders get set for this year’s three day Aintree Grand National Festival, British Transport Police are all set to help racegoers enjoy the event safely.

Once again  teamwork has been central to this year’s operation with officers working for months in advance with industry partners, MerseyTravel, Merseyrail and Merseyside Police to deliver a successful  policing operation for the event, which attracts thousands of visitors to the city.

British Transport Police will have a robust policing operation in place which will see an increased number of police officers at stations across the city providing an enhanced level of visibility   and reassurance to passengers and station staff.

And racegoers are encouraged to work hand in hand with police to make the event a success by respecting other passengers and rail staff, remaining vigilant and aware of their surroundings and by drinking sensibly.

Chief inspector Malcolm McKinnon said: “This is a fantastic event in the City of Liverpool’s sporting calendar.
By showing common courtesy and respect to your fellow passengers and rail staff and having a sensible approach to alcohol consumption, everyone can get along and make it an enjoyable occasion for all. 
“We will have an increased high visibility presence at stations throughout the three days of the festival providing reassurance for racegoers, staff and other rail passengers and to deal with any incidents of anti-social behaviour or disorder should they occur.   

“As with previous years our key advice is to plan ahead before you travel and leave plenty of time as stations and trains will be busy on the way to and from the event.

“Queuing systems will be in place to ease congestion so we ask people to be patient with rail staff and others as these processes have been put in place for their benefit.

“Any abuse of rail staff or other passengers will not be tolerated and officers will act swiftly to deal with any incidents of anti social behaviour or disorder.
“Anyone deemed too intoxicated to travel will have no other choice than to find another way home.

“As ever, if you need us on your journey call 0800 40 50 40, or text us discreetly on 61016.
“We want everyone to really enjoy this fantastic occasion and make sure they get there and back safely.”

BTP is also issuing the following top tips  for safe travel to racegoers:

Plan Ahead:

• Ensure you have a valid ticket – many can be purchased in advance to avoid queuing

• Confirm train time and connections before travelling, giving yourself plenty of time to catch a train

• Make sure at least one person knows where and when you are travelling and your expected arrival time

Stay Aware:

• Wherever possible avoid openly carrying or displaying valuable items such as mobile phones or iPods

• Be wise to potential pickpockets. Keep purses and wallets close to your body and out of sight

• If you drink, don’t over do it, and don’t carry any open bottles on the trains or at stations

• Stay awake while travelling

On the Train:

• Keep any luggage in view – check it regularly and be extra vigilant when the train stops at stations

• Secure your belongings. Don’t leave wallets or purses in your coat hanging on a hook

• Never leave laptops, mobile phones or any electrical equipment or valuables unattended

• Keep an even temper

• Don’t be abusive to rail staff

Remember BTP officers will be on hand across the rail network and any crime or suspicious behaviour on the railways should be reported to BTP on Freefone 0800 40 50 40.

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