Election 2017: ‘Enhanced security’ expected in Dartford in wake of London Bridge terror attacks

PUBLISHED: 11:40 05 June 2017 | UPDATED: 16:28 05 June 2017

Polling stations

Polling stations

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Details on security remain scarce

Polling stations around Dartford are expected to go under “enhanced security” measures as voters go to the polls on Thursday.

The assurance comes after seven people were killed while out in London Bridge on Saturday night, when three terrorists drove along the bridge in a van, which they then left and went on a knife wielding rampage around Borough Market.

All three terrorists were shot dead by armed police within eight minutes of the first 999 call.

The attack was the second to strike the country since prime minister Theresa May called a snap general election in April, after 23 people were killed including a suicide bomber who detonated at Manchester Arena after an Ariana Grande concert on May 22.

We now understand ahead of Thursday’s election, Dartford council has put “enhanced security measures in place”, which it declined to give further detail on.

More than 52,000 people went to the polls at the last election in the Tory constituency, representing 68 per cent of the electorate.

In Gravesham, just over 50,000 people turned out to vote in 2015, around 67 per cent of the electorate, and the council has issued the following statement on how it will be preparing for Thursday:

A spokesperson said: “Following government and the advice of Kent Police, we do not believe that there is an immediate threat to our polling stations. However all stations are staffed with trained presiding officers and poll clerks who will remain vigilant and repeat checks throughout the day.

“Additional safety measures have been put in place and we are working closely with Kent Police to ensure the safety of voters and staff.”

A Kent Police spokesperson remained coy on potential police tactics which could be used to beef up security, saying: “We continue to liaise with the Home Office to regularly assess the national threat levels and what that means for our country.

“We ask that people remain alert but not alarmed and that anything suspicious be reported to the Anti-Terrorist Hotline 0800 789 321.”

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