Broadwater businesses tell of shock at armed police incident

Staff at businesses in Broadwater have reacted with shock at the armed police incident in the area this morning (January 16).

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 12:17 pm
Updated Thursday, 16th January 2020, 12:18 pm

The emergency services, including armed police and the police helicopter, were called at around 8.30am to Broadwater Street West, Broadwater, to deal with an incident at a property there, which is still ongoing as of 12pm.

Read more:

Worthing armed police incident: Emergency service response praised by eyewitnessArmed police surround Worthing property in large emergency incidentPictures show huge emergency response with armed police at Worthing propertyThe road was closed and one side of the road, outside Hanwells shop and the flats above where the emergency response seemed to be focused, was also shut to pedestrians.

The scene of the incident in Broadwater
The scene of the incident in Broadwater

Sussex Police confirmed it was responding to 'concerns for the welfare of a man' nearby but has not confirmed any other information.

Lucy Guest, barmaid at The Broadwater pub nearby, said she first realised something serious had happened when she 'opened her curtains at about 9am' and saw the scene. "I was like, 'oh my God'", she said.

She said she could see six or seven police cars, two ambulances, a paramedic van, armed response vehicles, fire engines, the helicopter and 'some guys with some big old guns', and that the cordon extended from Ian Hart Funeral Service to Northbrook College.

The pub remains open. She added: "In all fairness, they are doing a really good job. It must be quite draining for them.

The scene of the incident in Broadwater

"They are telling everyone to stay away from Hanwells and the Costa area; no-one can go near there.

"The emergency services have done an amazing job and they are keeping people updated. We're getting a lot of people coming around asking what's going on, but they're keeping them informed and making sure the area is clear."

Barry Norris, owner of Findon Framing, said this incident had the largest emergency service response he had seen in his 20 years at the shop.

He said: "We have had cars hit the building next door, and lampposts on both sides of us, but this is something else.

The scene of the incident in Broadwater

"Fortunately, as far as we are aware, no-one has been injured yet."

When he saw the emergency services on his drive in to work, he assumed they were responding to a road traffic collision. But it soon became clear it was more serious.

He said that pedestrians were allowed to pass on the side of the road by his shop, leading to 'people milling around' to see what was happening.

He added: "We don't know what is going on, but there are a lot of them here so it is obviously containment - because if it moved, you'd have trouble."

The scene of the incident in Broadwater