GREATER Manchester Police (GMP) took part in an anti-terrorism training exercise led by Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) at Leigh Sports Village.

Based on a mock scenario, the exercise, which took place on Monday, January 30, tested the multi-agency response to a marauding terrorist incident, ensuring the emergency services work together to deliver an outstanding service.

The exercise involved colleagues from GMP's Tactical Aid Unit, GMFRS firefighters from Bolton and Wigan, North West Ambulance Service and North West Fire Control.

Assistant Chief Constable Wasim Chaudhry, head of Local Resilience Forum for Greater Manchester, said: "During this exercise GMPs Firearms Command Training Team and Tactical Aid Unit worked alongside GMFRS and North West Ambulance Service to test the multi-agency working and preparedness in the event of a terrorism-related incident.

"I am pleased to say the event was extremely useful and I was encouraged that so many colleagues were able to take part.

"Joint multiagency training, testing and exercising is extremely valuable. Exercises such as this are an opportunity to test the ability of police officers, staff and partner agencies to work together to deliver an outstanding service, whilst keeping people safe and caring for victims.

"I would like to use this opportunity to thank our partner agencies, and also the Leigh Sports Village, for their involvement in this exercise."

GMFRS’s Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Ben Norman, said: “The threat of a terror attack is deeply worrying but sadly it is a reality we face here in Greater Manchester. That is why it is imperative that we are well trained, well equipped and well prepared to ensure we can respond effectively to help people if we are ever called upon.  

“As well as keeping the public safe, the safety of our firefighters is an absolute priority. We have established a more resilient marauding terrorist attack capability for Greater Manchester, by increasing our capacity and capability, which sees every firefighter being fully trained and every fire appliance better equipped to respond to all forms of terrorist or mass casualty incident.

“Regular training exercises such as this allow us to continue to put our collective emergency service response into practice so we can ensure we’re always ready.”

Steve Hynes, Assistant Director of Resilience: “Whilst we regularly conduct training and exercises within NWAS, collaboration with our blue light partners is vital if we are to provide a seamless joint response to the public. Exercises such as these are crucial to test our combined resilience and preparedness for major incidents.”