Bomb scare in Brighton ahead of Labour Party conference

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The Grand Hotel and neighbouring Brighton Centre were evacuated on Sunday after what turned out to be a bomb hoax during the Trades Union Congress’ annual conference. The security scare comes just weeks before the Labour Party Conference is due to take place at the Brighton Centre.

It is reported that a call made to the hotel at 4.30pm on Sunday 10 September prompted the decision to evacuate the hotel, which was made as a precaution before a search of the building was conducted by Sussex Police.

The neighbouring Brighton Centre was also evacuated as an extra measure.

No suspicious packages or items were located.

A statement released by the hotel read: “We apologise to any visitor who may have been inconvenienced, however, in these times of heightened security we must be ever vigilant and ensure the safety of our hotel guests, team, suppliers and local neighbours.

“An investigation is underway by Sussex Police to trace the person responsible for the call.”

Heightened security

A source at Brighton’s convention bureau confirmed that both The Grand and the Brighton Centre re-opened on Sunday evening. The source added: “Appropriate security arrangements for the Labour Party Conference are in place, as agreed with the Home Office, Sussex Police and the Labour Party, which reflect the needs of the event.”

Sussex Police issued a statement confirming investigations are ongoing. The statement read: “Thorough searches and enquiries are taking place to establish as soon as possible whether or not the call is a genuine one.

“Military ordnance disposal are attending as part of the search. Nothing untoward has been found at this time.”

The Grand was the scene of the 1984 Conservative Party conference attack. An Irish Republican Army bomb killed five people.

Paul Colston

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Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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