ASP Instructor Seminar – Gimborn

Story By Martin Turner – BTP Branch Secretary

April 2018 saw me attend my first full length Gimborn Seminar as a student. The title of the course was ‘ASP Instructor’ but the focus was more generally on Defensive Tactics. Two German IPA friends were attending/chairing the seminar so I couldn’t say no!

I drove to Germany, via a ferry, very early on the morning of 2nd April, arriving at Gimborn Castle at around 15:30. As usual, a warm welcome was received from the staff and fellow students. I settled into my lovely en-suite ‘IPA Dusseldorf’ room and soon found my way to the Turmbar (Tower Bar) to meet some of my fellow students. I also met the instructors, Liam and John from Ireland, who clearly knew their stuff.

The first day involved some administration work in the classroom, form filling in and a brief theory input from the ASP Instructors. It became clear that not only would we be instructed in various Officer Safety techniques, we would also be trained and accredited as instructors ourselves, if we passed! Needless to say this wasn’t going to be an ‘easy’ week…

We were taken to a nearby gym hall in minibuses, equipped with our duty belts and sports gear. The hall had been well prepared and the various ASP pieces of duty and training kit ready for use

The first day consisted of unarmed and baton techniques and drills. Unlike the UK, everything was built up to full power and full speed. Partners rushed at you and showed no mercy! It was a great way to learn and far more realistic than usual training. It was also exhausting!

Day two built on day one and introduced the four types of handcuffs produced by ASP, chain, hinge, rigid and tri-fold. It was great to learn such simple and quick techniques without over-complicating anything. After a lovely packed lunch we learned Flashlight drills, using a bright torch to distract and disorient your subject. We then ran through a selection of circle and post drills, including against the ‘Red Man’ to put all our learning into practice. Another exhausting day!

Day three was the toughest day. It involved running through the two day Officer Safety training programme in one day, taught by us (students) whilst being assessed as instructors and students. Each student taught the lesson allocated to him/her in their native language. It was interesting being taught in Cantonese, Sri Lankan, Luxembourgish and Maltese to name a few!

At the end of the day a short awards ceremony was held with even more gifts from ASP being handed out. The instructors were thanked and it was off to get ready for the traditional Thursday ‘International Night’.

The International night involved an amazing BBQ cooked by our German colleagues, with a little help from the Netherlands, and the usual exchange of patches and challenge coins. Local delicacies such as sweets, chocolate, meats and cheese were swapped, along with a variety of local tipples from each other’s countries… The 2011 Vintage Churchill Port I procured at the last IPA House of Commons tour went down very well, along with bottles of Glenmorangie and Talisker single malt.

Day four saw some tired and sore heads at breakfast! But we were looking forward to our next input at the gym. A member of the North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) police’s Spezialeinsatzkommando tactical unit gave his morning to train as in knife defence tactics. We learned and practiced some great new skills from the officer. Skills his team have learned the hard way.

We returned to Gimborn for lunch and then spent the afternoon receiving inputs around identifying and dealing with Improvised Explosive Devices, delivered by the NRW Police’s tactical bomb disposal unit. The trainer clearly knew his stuff and had a wealth of experience in his field.

Friday evening saw us being coached into Cologne city centre for some sight-seeing and a lovely meal in a traditional Brauhaus. Accompanied by copious amounts of Kolsch of course!

Saturday, our final day, saw some scenario training. This was really excellent and put all the week’s training and theory into practice. We searched for IEDs and fought knife wielding subjects. We then had a constructive feedback session and closed the course. A thoroughly enjoyable, challenging and worthwhile seminar which I would recommend anyone to go on!

The International Police Association host a number of police related seminars at Gimborn Castle in Germany. This is an example of subjects available to members of the IPA. For information on how to join the IPA please visit http://www.ipa-uk.org 

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All Change In The London North Branch

Last night I stepped down as Chair of the London North Branch, a post I have held for the last couple of years. I had the pleasure of welcoming the new Vice Chair and Chair to the committee and having the opportunity to share a beer with both of them.

During my time as the Chair I have worked very hard with dedicated committee members behind the scenes to make the branch the success it has become. Without their efforts and the participation of branch members the branch would not be where it is today. Thank you to all of you.

 Eren Emin – Chair                           Stuart Wratten – Vice Chair

I hope that you will welcome them both to their roles and will support them in the same way as you have supported me during my time as Chair.

I will remain as the Regional Secretary for 9 Region (Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, BTP and North London areas) and will dedicate my time to that role. I will be prioritising promotion, events and member recruitment.

Yours in friendship

Martyn Linton
Former Branch Chair – London North

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Ceremony Of The Keys Events

Post By Martyn Linton – London North Branch Chair

The London North Branch have had the pleasure of attending the Tower Of London on two occasions for the Ceremony Of the keys event. The visits took place on the 14th of November 2017 and 22 May 2018.

For those who do not know what the Ceremony Of The Keys is it is the daily traditional ceremony that takes place where the Tower Of London is locked. This ceremony has taken place everyday for hundreds of years and takes place at the same time everyday without fail.

On both occassions we met at the Wetherspoons pub across the road where members had a drink or two before the event started. At the start of the event members met their tour guide who welcomed the group and talked through what would be happening. It was a pleasure to meet members from the Thames Valley Branch at the second event.

We were taken on a guided tour around the very impressive venue where we made a number of stops to be told about the history of the point in question. The history spanning several hundred years was very interesting to hear.

After the tour we were welcomed to the Yeoman Warders Bar for a few drinks before we witnessed the formal ceremony. When the time came to watch the main event we were taken to what is known as Traitors Gate – the entrance where traitors were brought to the tower by boat to face imprisonment/execution. We stood and watched the soldiers wearing their pristine uniforms start the ceremony.

We followed the ceremony as it moved around the corner towards the main tower and observed the formal process that takes place. When it had finished we returned to the Yeoman Warders Bar for a few more drinks and a raffle was conducted with a number of members winning prizes varying from bottles of wine through to whiskey glasses and other impressive items.

We remained in the bar with our hosts and heard some impressive facts not mentioned in the tour about the Tower Of London. On both occassions it was an absolute pleasure to attend.

This is one of a number of events that members of the International Police Association take part in. For details on how to join visit the IPA website at http://www.ipa-uk.org

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Meal At House Of Commons

9 Region IPA members attended a meal at the House Of Commons on the 15th of October 2017. London North Branch Chair Martyn Linton tells the story.

I opened my email inbox to find an invite for a meal at the House Of Commons that my Vice Chair Dan mount had arranged and having never been there before thought what a great opportunity this was. On the day of the event I along with my better half arrived at the St Stephen’s Tavern, a traditional pub located directly opposite the House Of Commons. Members gathered and a few drinks were had before it came time to cross the road for the main event.

Having gained access past the gate it was off to the security room to be searched. After emptying my pockets and removing my trouser belt and being given the green light it was time to enter the main building. I was immediately impressed by the large ceiling and structure of the hall where we entered. I would learn more about the history of this building at another event.

We were shown into the dining area where our group occupied at least four tables. Wine was consumed and the waiting staff started to deliver food to our tables. I am a large man. Standing at six feet seven inches tall it is no surprise that I like my food. I don’t do what I call posh food very often and those around me laughed when I looked at my plate. Where is the rest of it I asked the waiter who failed to see the funny side.

It was a very relaxing atmosphere and it was very pleasing to see members smiling, talking and having a good time. Members had come from far and wide. It was really good to meet BTP member Rick who lives in Romania. We had spoken vis email and Facebook several times but shaking the mans hand was like we had known each other for a long time. That there was the IPA spirit in full swing.

All good things must come to an end as they say and after what seemed like no time at all it was time for us to leave the dining room and head our separate ways back home.

I would like to thank Dan Mount for arranging this event and I hope we can return in 2018.

Membership of the International Police Association is open to serving/retired Police Officers, Specials and Police Staff. It is FREE to enrol. Visit http://www.ipa-uk.org

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Visit To Miami Dade P.D

London North member Sean Keogh joined the IPA in 2017 and contacted his branch seeking assistance in arranging a visit to see local cops on a trip to Miami. Here is his story.

On Friday 17th November, my brother and I who is a special in Herts Police, attended the Miami-Dade Police Academy. Our host was Sean Hayes, a former Navy serviceman and twenty-eight year veteran of the Miami-Dade Police Department (MDPD).

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Having gained access to the site we were introduced to Lt. Ortiz who was in charge of the initial foundation training delivered to all recruits to MDPD. Recruits to Miami-Dade undergo the minimum State-mandated training before undertaking an additional 7/8 weeks making the initial training 37 weeks if my memory serves me well. As well as MDPD, the Miami Department of Corrections and FBI also make use of the facility.

After introductions were we shown to a golf buggy and whisked on a tour of the facility starting with a cluster of buildings that formed a scenario area where recruits are tested on their handling of all manner of scenarios from a domestic incident to an active-shooter scenario. The scenarios are constantly reviewed and adapted to ensure the training meets current needs; the most recent example being a scenario for dual active shooters (inspired by London/Las Vegas) where one of the shooters fires from a second story at the public/officers. This scenario also featured input from the Fire & Rescue department to assist with inter-agency cooperation.

Next up were the ranges. All of the department’s 2900 sworn officers are trained to use the Glock 17, the venerable Remington 12-Gauge shotgun and a semi automatic adaption of the AR-15 assault rifle.

We were introduced to the ‘tactics house’ with an aerial walkway so that instructors may assess officers’ operational tactics which those who have been to Gravesend on various public order courses may be familiar with. The difference with this particular structure is however that it is able to sustain a number of gunshots without them escaping into the surrounding facility. We also saw the 200 yard range and a pistol range where officers were re-certifying their qualification. The crackle of nearby gunfire accompanied our visit to the obstacle course where Lt Ortiz explained that there is a substantive physical training element in the training of recruits who are tested on entry to the academy and completion of the course with an expectation of significant improvement.

We watched a few minutes of an officer safety refresher course in which the instructor demonstrated various ‘up close’ self defence tactics, in particular addressing the issue of when a suspect attempts to seize the weapon of the officer or produces a weapon of his own. It is frequent to hear how ‘trigger happy’ the Police in the USA are in general, but that ethos certainly isn’t supported by the statistics (less than 1% of MDPD contacts result in the use of deadly force) or the training being provided that I witnessed.

From there we were shown the well furnished classroom areas, locker rooms and the two on-site gyms as well as the swimming pool before a brief look at the incident control room simulator (best described as a high end version of Hydra) which looked something similar to the Situation Room in the West Wing (for those of you who enjoyed Martin Sheen’s presidency).

All of this was done whilst the Smurf’s jogged about the site to their lectures/sessions each one greeting us in passing with “good morning, sir” (admittedly this came more as a wheeze depending on how long the recruit had been running for).

I was left with the impression that there is a great deal of pride and a determination to provide the highest possible standard of training at the facility. We were told of the new ‘simulator’ building which would shortly be constructed for more immersive scenario training and plans to use the hurricane assisted de-wooded area of the site to expand the obstacle course (to the top of the hill, go!).

As thanks for the hospitality of our visit both Sean and Lt Ortiz were gifted with custodian helmets. After our visit Sean took us her and I to Fudrukkers for a well needed burger.

Membership of the International Police Association is open to serving/retired Police Officers, Specials and Police Staff. It is FREE to enrol. Visit http://www.ipa-uk.org

 

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Great Ormond Street – Charity Raffle

Sav Kyriakou MBE is the Regional Chairman of the International Police Association 9 Region area (Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, BTP and North London branches). Recognised for his charity work his quest to raise money for those less fortunate continues.

Sav writes:

As you know I do lots of fundraising for military charities but a colleague was explaining that the ward his 4 years old son attends (he’s battling his second cancer)😓 lacks toys and games for the children.

Dan explained that not enough of the monies raised are given directly to those that need it as too much is swallowed by administration.

This got me thinking as how I could help raising money to directly support the children’s wards at Great Ormond Street Hospital, University College Hospital and others.

To do this I have a signed Arsenal Football club shirt from the 15/16 season that was given to me for charity and I would like to raffle it off.

I know that most people don’t admit to being an Arsenal fan, but I’m sure you have family, friends or colleagues that might secretly be a fan?

This might just be the perfect Christmas present for them, or indeed the best secret Santa gift for a colleague? Alternatively if you win you could easily make your money back and a few pennies more by selling it on.

The raffle tickets cost £5 each and I really would like to sell at least 200, so please feel free to advertise and share this far and wide.

In order to be in with a chance to win, send an email to me at Sav.kyriakou@hotmail.com and you’ll get an automated response on what to do next.

The draw will take place on the 20th of December via a random number generator to pick the winner and your prize will be posted thereafter.
I hope you can support this endeavour, and please do share it to generate maximum interest (you’ll need to save the post copy and repost it please).

Kind Regards

Sav

Arsenal Shirt

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IPA Lincoln Award 2017

Story by Martyn Linton – London North Branch


Today I had news from one of the Section UK Vice Presidents that I had been awarded the first ever IPA Section UK Lincoln Award. 

The Lincoln Award for those who’ve never heard of it is UK award of £1000 given on a yearly basis to a UK member to use towards an educational purpose. 

Earlier this year I applied for the Arthur Troop Scholarship (ATS) to visit the US to take part in a course in America titled Gangs – Target The Entire Gang. Here I would train alongside law enforcement professionals in tactics targeting gang crime. My ATS application was unsuccessful but it was successful for the UK Lincoln Award.

I have an interest in gang culture and my work as a Detective in the Metropolitan Police sees me work with gang members. I had a childhood that saw me start to get involved in gangs in the late 1990’s. Gangs then weren’t what they are now and have evolved massively. 

It is an absolute honour to have been awarded the first ever Lincoln Award and I will use this opportunity to build on my existing knowledge of gang culture, enforcement and prevention. In 2018 I have been invited to speak at a IPA arranged seminar on gangs being held in Leicestershire at the Police HQ and I hope tdon’t be able to share knowledge gained on this course in that seminar. 

I will be writing about my experience in the hope that others will take advantage of this wonderful opportunity provided to members of the IPA. This is one of many benefits of IPA membership!

Membership to the IPA is open to serving and retired Police Officers, Specials & Staff. For more information or to join visit http://www.ipa-uk.org 

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