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Bilderberg conference at The Grove hotel in Watford: Almost £1m spent on police costs, Hertfordshire Constabulary reveal
The final cost of police operation around the Bilderberg Group meeting in Watford earlier this year was just under £1 million, Hertfordshire Constabulary has revealed.
The force announced today the final bill was £990,000 for the event, which saw luminaries from the world of business, academia and politics - including Prime Minister David Cameron - attend.
Hertfordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, David Lloyd, has now approved a bid to the Government for a grant to help cover the costs of the operation around The Grove hotel.
The constabulary has already received a contribution of £500,000 from the Bilderberg Group, although under current legislation they are under no legal obligation to do so.
Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd commented: "The policing operation was highly effective and showed how well placed the force is to handle such a large-scale event. The event put Hertfordshire in the media spotlight, nationally and internationally, and the force handled it really well.
"Also key to the operation’s planning was to ensure that disruption to the local community was kept to an absolute minimum. The police planning team met with local residents before the event to address the questions and, where appropriate, adjust the policing operation accordingly. At a well-attended post-event meeting held for the local community, residents expressed their gratitude to the police for the effectiveness of the operation.
"As an event of international significance, it is right that the burden of policing costs should not fall to the people of Hertfordshire. That is why I have approved the bid to the Home Office to cover the remaining gap in the costs and I anticipate that this will bring to a close our work on a successful event."
A large-scale police operation was launched over three day secretive conference in June, which included a no-fly zone and roads around the hotel being closed with anti-terror laws.
As well as Hertfordshire’s own officers, police from the neighbouring force areas of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Thames Valley and the Metropolitan Police were present.
Officers were also drafted in from as far afield as South Yorkshire, Leicestershire, Surrey and Sussex.
During the conferences thousands of protestors congregated in the grounds of The Grove to demonstrate against the group.
The conference saw powerful politicians such as the Prime Minister, Chancellor George Osborne, shadow chancellor Ed Balls and cabinet minister Ken Clarke spending time at the exclusive venue with leading global figures.
Other figures present included Google CEO Eric Schmidt, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, former CIA director David Petraeus. Christine Lagarde, the head of the IMF as well as the heads large corporations such as Barclays, Amazon, Google and Shell.
The event is covert and no minutes of recordings of the discussions are released to the public.
However the event passed off peacefully with only two arrests made over the three days.
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