G4S provides security for the Wimbledon Championships for the 26th year running

  • 17 Jul 2015 14:27
G4S has been securing The Championships for 26 years and we’ve built up a significant amount of knowledge and experience but, with so many courts and matches, Wimbledon still poses a unique challenge.
655 17072015 G4S provides security for the Wimbledon championships for the 26th year running

Long before strawberries creep into supermarket adverts and the nation starts debating Andy Murray’s nationality, we’re already working hard to secure the world’s most prestigious tennis competition. We have a presence on site at Wimbledon all year round but things start to build from April as the site transitions from a members’ sports club to an international venue that can host 39,000 visitors a day. 

When Andy’s on Centre and Rafa finishes on Court One, how do you get eleven thousand people onto Henman Hill to enjoy the final set? A good Wimbledon experience means nobody but us considers that question.
 
The bigger challenges can come from the external factors we must adapt to, and this year started amid sombre news. With the dreadful events in Tunisia, we were acutely aware of the potential anxiety this could create on opening day. That kind of backdrop brings its own complexity so in conjunction with the police and the All England Club we worked to ensure our assessment for the Championships was appropriate and challenged our colleagues to ensure they provided the security element first time and every time to the highest of standards.  But it’s important the customer experience is unaffected - Wimbledon is a quintessentially British sporting event and it was up to us to help preserve its air of crisp efficiency and support the visitor experience.
 
Wimbledon’s hottest day on record then tested the softer side of security as we battled to keep colleagues comfortable and match-fit, so they in turn could look after the crowds. In thirty-five degree heat our welfare team were busy distributing water and sun cream to the 750 stewards on site while we made sure spectators knew where the water points were - and St John’s Ambulance stations if needed. We even relaxed our dress code and let the jackets come off!  
 
Finally came the tube strike. Some 750 colleagues needed to get to a small corner of London to help 39,000 dedicated spectators enjoy the experience they were eagerly anticipating. With London’s main transport network out of service there was a real concern that our stewards would not all make it. However, we needn’t have worried.  By hook or by crook our fantastic staff checked in for duty. It might not be strictly by the book but some even brought tents and camped on Wimbledon Common so they didn’t miss a shift. 
 
In all we’re very proud of the Wimbledon fortnight. A job well done means nobody notices the hard work and preparation that goes into hosting such a complex event which involves some 490,000 tennis fans. Customer experience is always key and we adapt our approach to match the audience. Whether it’s the Foo Fighters at Murrayfield, The Ashes at Edgbaston or Taylor Swift in Hyde Park, we are there so everyone else can enjoy the experience they came for.
 
This weekend all eyes are turned to The Open golf at St Andrews - 230,000 people watching 300 of the world’s best golfers in 250 different matches on a 600 year old golf course. If everything goes to plan you won’t stop to think about how we made that happen.

^