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‘Treat our staff with respect’ plea as emergency services get ready for busy World Cup night

PUBLISHED: 16:10 11 July 2018 | UPDATED: 16:15 11 July 2018

England v Colombia World Cup match. People watching the game in Bar & Beyond.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

England v Colombia World Cup match. People watching the game in Bar & Beyond. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2018

Norfolk’s emergency services are gearing up for a busy night as England take on Croatia in the World Cup semi-finals.

Kevin Brown. Photo: EEAST. Kevin Brown. Photo: EEAST.

Norfolk Constabulary said they had plans in plans and more officers out than they usually would on a regular Wednesday evening.

And officers praised fans for their “excellent behaviour” so far during the tournament.

Assistant chief constable Simon Megicks said: “We as a force are just excited as the rest of the country and are showing our support today by flying the St. Georges flag at all stations with a flag pole.

“You have all done your country proud and I hope you keep flying the flag for Norfolk with good behaviour, an excellent atmosphere and tolerance as England face Croatia.

“If you are going out to watch the match tonight we want you to have a good time. Make sure you stick with your friends and plan your route home. If you’re going to watch the match at a pub, pre-book safe transport home and do not accept lifts from strangers.

“Norfolk has specific policing plans in place surrounding the World Cup and officers will deal robustly with any issues. There will be an increased police presence during the match in the city and town centres but this is just to make sure everyone has a great time and behaves themselves.

“Remember, be responsible, stick with your friends and know your limits - most importantly have a great time. Come on England! It’s coming home!”

At the East of England Ambulance Trust they expected high demand - on Saturday, when England played Sweden, the service recorded 3786 calls in total, with a massive spike after the final whistle.

The service gets an average 3300 calls every day.

Kevin Brown, director of service delivery, said: “We expect tonight and this weekend to be very busy. I would urge you to take care of yourself and your friends after the match. If you are not sure if you need help, dial 111.

“Our staff coped brilliantly over this last weekend, reaching our sickest patients very quickly. Help us by only calling when absolutely necessary.

“If you do need our services, treat our staff with respect – violence and aggression towards NHS staff will not be tolerated and perpetrators will be punished to the full extent of the law.”

At Norfolk Fire and Rescue there was no extra cover put in place but a spokesman did issue advice to those enjoying the match. They said: “We would encourage fans and licensees to contribute to the enjoyment by not forgetting safety. Licensees in particular can play their part by not allowing their premises to become overcrowded, and ensuring that all fire exits are kept clear. Whatever the result, we hope everyone will enjoy the game and adopt a common sense approach to watching it.”

• Watch all the reaction from across Norfolk and Waveney this evening on this newspaper’s Facebook page.

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