August 24: Does the Ebor meeting really warrant so many police?

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From: Tim Hailstone, Venn Lane, Stoke Fleming, South Devon.

FOR many years, I have made an annual visit to Yorkshire to attend the first three days of the Ebor race meeting on the Knavesmire. It is always a very enjoyable trip. It is a beautiful part of the world, and I find Yorkshire people to be friendly and helpful.

The standard of food and drink offered is very high. The racecourse is one of the best managed in the UK.

I stay with friends in Malton and travel to York by train. The walk from the station to the course is pleasant through quiet streets. Unfortunately, the walk back to the station after racing is much less pleasant. The side streets are all blocked off with tape (even the footpath) and each one is zealously guarded by a policeman or woman as the racegoers are herded like sheep. This level of supervision is completely unnecessary.

In my many years of walking this route, I have never seen an incident that required the intervention of the police. It is a great waste of resources, especially at a time when the police force is complaining loudly about the cuts that the Government is imposing on it.

Walking back to the station last night I counted 11 policemen and women taking part in this operation.

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