THE DIRECTOR of the Nato summit team briefed councillors on the plans for the event at a meeting this week.
This comes as just 36 days before the ‘eyes of the world’ are on Newport for the September summit at the city’s Celtic Manor Resort.
Peter Boxer the director of the Nato summit team along with Gwent Police superintendent Mark Warrender, briefed city councillors about their plans for the summit at Tuesday night’s full council meeting.
Talking to councillors Mr Boxer said the summit will be “one of the largest operations of its type the UK has ever seen.”
Reinforcing the scale of the event He said that councillors should expect around 1,500 journalists, hundreds of guests and thousands of police officers.
“You are the host city,” he said. “People will be looking to Newport for your welcome. We have booked every single hotel there is from here to Bristol and are allocating them.”
Mr Boxer added that they feel “prepared” for the event which he described as having a “military feel” due to the high level of security.
Superintendent Warrender informed councillors of the planned demonstration marches against the summit, taking place in the city on August 4 and 30.
He said that a policing team of eight thousand officers, plus the current Gwent officers will be ensuring there is ‘minimum disruption’ as officers have been speaking to businesses, G.P surgeries, council departments and other sectors to inform them of plans.
During the briefing councillors raised concerns as to how Newport was to benefit from the summit with Councillor Chris Evans asking how traders will benefit. Officials said that local bars and hotels will be some of the businesses that will benefit from the additional trade provided by delegates and said they were ‘looking at how to maximise the impact’ of the event for local businesses.