There was no trouble in Watford town centre this morning as police stepped up patrols for today’s match against Luton Town.

Several police officers were deployed to High Street and surrounding areas today (September 26) to ensure people were behaving themselves for today’s derby match, which in the past has been marred by crowd trouble.

But there were no incidents in the town centre this morning before kick-off, which had been moved to an earlier time of 12.30pm from 3pm on police advice.

Hertfordshire Constabulary said an early-kick off for the match on Saturday was its preference “as we look to minimise any possible impact on residents and businesses”.

The force had also been concerned that Hatters fans may ignore warnings to not travel to the town.

As a result, several officers were seen patrolling High Street earlier today, with there having also been police cars and vans parked up at the parade as well.

Watford Observer:

Watford Observer:

Watford Observer:

Police in Watford town centre today 

There was also a police van parked outside Watford Junction station, while several officers had also been outside Watford High Street station.

Watford Observer:

Watford Observer:

And there had also been officers by Vicarage Road to ensure there was no trouble this morning.

Watford Observer:

Watford Observer:

Although police said it was their preference to have more officers in Watford today, people in the town were left divided on whether they thought it was necessary.

Iain Day said he thought the number of police officers in the town was “overkill”.

He said: “It’s ridiculous. There is no supporters coming from Luton today, they are not allowed in the grounds, there won’t be many coming so I think it is overkill.

“I am all for police presence but this is way over the top just for this.”

However, another man named Shaun said he felt that it was a “good thing” to have a larger police presence today.

He said: “If something does occur you know you have some back-up really, I’m a local and I don’t want to see the place get smashed up.”

Earlier in the week Chief Superintendent Matt Nicholls said: “I want to reassure our local communities that we are working closely with our colleagues in Bedfordshire, Watford Borough Council and the respective football clubs to limit anti-social behaviour and disorder.

“We will have a high-visibility police presence at train stations and in city centres across Hertfordshire to make sure the match goes ahead peacefully as planned. I would like to remind supporters of both teams of the new Government rules of the ‘rule of six’ – no more than six people can meet in a group indoors or outdoors.”

He added: “Anyone who comes into Hertfordshire to cause criminal damage, violence or anti-social behaviour can expect to be arrested.

“If you have any information about supporters who intend to cause disruption, please report online at herts.police.uk/Report/ or call 101 in confidence.”