Woodside High hosted the first Police Engagement workshop for November with students ‘trying on the kit’ whilst officers shared stories with the teenagers.

By Christina Davis, Police Engagement Manager

Officers from the Territorial Support Group returned to our borough again for another engagement visit – this time to Woodside High School near Wood Green. Hope in Tottenham organised the session with the help of Woodside High Schools officer PC David Jones from North Area police.

Two students stand in gas masks alongside a Police Officer

It was a fun opportunity for students to stand next to officers and try on the equipment.

This was the first visit time that the Taskforce had been to Woodside and Headteacher Angela Wallace also came out to enjoy the visit. On this occasion, a mixed group of pupils were chosen to meet the officers and ask them about their working lives.

A uniformed police officer stands behind a riot shield whilst a student, wearing a high vis coat watches.

For many students, this was the first time they got to see or use these shields.

Woodside High teacher Ms Birks said that the visit had built positive relations and had helped to “humanize the officers”. She added that it had been interesting for the students to realise that the riot shields are actually mainly for the officer’s own protection.

PC Sachin Vishran had earlier explained that the officers had used their riot shields all night during the Grenfell Tower fire to accompany and protect Firefighters from falling masonry as they moved about in the building.

The officers said that they had had a great reception at Woodside noting “everyone was very engaged including the teachers and the students were really open to trying on the kit”.

Highlights for the pupils included trying on the hazmat suits and “pressing the buttons in the van” – although a lot of time was also spent bashing the riot shields!

A student wearing Metropolitan Police gear is taught how to use the riot shield.

Most students said getting to use the shields was the fun part.

Hope In Tottenham would like to thank the Territorial Support Group officers for coming to Haringey again and the staff and pupils from Woodside School for making their first visit so successful.