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27 May 2015, 07:36
Deputy Chief Constable Heather Roach says, "The incident at Twyford Woods on Saturday evening through to the morning of Sunday 24th May was a disgrace.
"21 police officers were injured. Thankfully most of the injuries were minor involving soft tissue injuries, cuts and scratches. Three officers, two from Derbyshire and one from Lincolnshire required hospital treatment, they have since been discharged. The worst of the injuries was a suspected broken jaw which luckily turned out not to be broken.
"llegal parties sometimes known as raves are just that, illegal. One of the core responsibilities and aims of the police is to make sure that people are safe. Gatherings such as this are not safe. There are no safety assessments or plans. Equipment to tackle fires or medical emergencies are generally non-existent. Crowd control measures such as barriers to prevent people being crushed or suffocated are not present and access to the sites for the emergency services such as the Ambulance Service or the Fire and Rescue Service are inadequate.
"The difference between this type of gathering and a legitimate party or rave can be demonstrated by comparing it to a music event taking place in Lincolnshire over the weekend involving around 5000 people which passed off without any major problems. I would encourage people to attend events like this where they will be much safer.
"Given that proceedings are now active with suspects charged with a variety of offences I can't comment on the fine detail of what happened but it is fair to say that my officers encountered a very violent situation. In order to provide policing cover at various other events throughout Lincolnshire over the Bank holiday weekend we had additional resources available courtesy of our colleagues in other East Midlands forces. In spite of this we still had to call in additional officers from other parts of the country. At one point some three hundred officers were involved.
"I must thank the residents and businesses who live and are located in the area of this incident for their patience and understanding. People passing through the country were also affected when we had to close the A1 because people attending the illegal rave had parked alongside that very busy road and were putting themselves and passing motorists in danger.
"The full cost of the operation cannot be counted until the ongoing investigation has been concluded and the offenders have been brought to justice. However it will run into thousands of pounds."