Excellence in security highlighted at BSIA’s inaugural British Security Awards 2018

On Wednesday 11 July at the London Marriott Hotel on Grosvenor Square, the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) gathered together member companies and their guests to celebrate the outstanding work being conducted within the security industry through the medium of the inaugural British Security Awards.

The Awards Ceremony commenced with the Security Personnel of the Year Awards, which specifically celebrate the talent, dedication, skill and bravery exhibited by security professionals during the line of duty. The categories in 2018 were Best Newcomer, Best Use of Technology, Outstanding Act, Service to the Customer and Best Team.

The national winners in each of these categories for this year are as follows:

Best Newcomer: Samantha Golding (Securitas UK)

Samantha Golding joined Securitas UK in the West Yorkshire region as a relief officer and her talents were recognised straight away. Within six months, Samantha was part of the management team making massive improvements in all of the areas in which she has worked, duly making a huge impact on both the management team and on the ground. Samantha is honoured for her professionalism and ‘going the extra mile’ for customers and officers. Her experience of working in Her Majesty’s Prison Service has afforded Samantha a unique set of skills, and she has used these to coach and develop the management team. Her manager describes Samantha as an absolute treasure and a pleasure to work with, an asset to Securitas and a credit to the team. Given that the security industry is a new sector for her, Samantha’s contribution as a newcomer has been little short of inspirational.

Best Use of Technology: Robert Haddon (VSG)

Robert Haddon has been working with the B&Q Crime Centre on a new intelligence gathering system which allows for the self-reporting of crime. The introduction of this system allows for uniformed officers in the field to self-report episodes of criminality directly to the Crime Centre by means of an installed application held on a tablet. In using his initiative and experience to develop this new technology for the B&Q Crime Centre, Robert’s all-new intelligence gathering system has already realised a 50% reduction in stock loss.

Outstanding Act: Nasir Ahmed (Mitie)

Nasir Ahmed was faced with an aggressive member of the public who threatened to commit suicide by pouring petrol on himself and his immediate surrounding area. Acting with little regard for his own safety, Nasir quickly evacuated the area and tackled the male to the ground, removing the lighter to stop him from doing serious damage to himself and, potentially, others. Nasir’s quick thinking undoubtedly saved the man’s life. His ability to remain calm and act quickly and professionally proved vital in ensuring that no lives were lost.

Service to the Customer: Silas Bogyere (SecuriGroup)

Silas Bogyere has been recognised for his compassion, teamwork and desire to work smarter, introducing new policies and training up teams. He has also been recognised for his tireless charity work, where over the last few years he has led fundraising schemes that have amassed over £20,000 for various worthy causes. Silas has been described as a very proactive and passionate character, applying his time and skills in some incredible and admirable ways. During the Grenfell Tower disaster, for instance, Silas quickly updated the client and SecuriGroup on what had happened and worked to provide assistance to members of the affected community in West London, raising over £1,000 and collecting and dropping off essentials to victims on the same day.

Best Team: Pennine Acute Hospital Security Team (Mitie)

Members of the Pennine Acute Hospital Security Team have been honoured for their professionalism in dealing with the aftermath of the Manchester Arena terror attack, working tirelessly to escort the Emergency Services in and around the hospital, moving patients around and comforting their families. Dealing with the aftermath of the terrible events that unfolded, the team members went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure the hospital’s smooth running on a night when the North West came to a standstill.

With presentations on the day courtesy of guest speaker, broadcaster and former 1980s pop star the Reverend Richard Coles, other winners were also celebrated by receiving the Apprentice Installer Award, the Innovative Security Project Award and the International Partnership Award. The winners here in 2018 are as follows:

Apprentice Installer Award: Jamie Royal (Vigil Security)

Jamie Royal left school knowing that he wanted to do something practical, so he applied to Vigil Security and was promptly offered an apprenticeship. He’s now progressing well towards his ambition of being a lead engineer. Jamie’s an excellent ambassador for his company, regularly working abroad on his own with blue chip clients such as Ralph Lauren, Prada, Philipp Plein and Mont Blanc.

Innovative Security Project Award: CSL Router Project (CSL)

The CSL Router can be used for many different applications and as a back-up option where broadband supply is limited or otherwise slow. The back-up 4G increases reliability which, as a result, boosts confidence levels among customers and cuts down on call-outs for security installers.

International Partnership Award: Power over Ethernet Ultrapod (Elmdene International)

Elmdene International was approached by The Louvre in Abu Dhabi to provide an access control system that would protect some of the most historic and priceless artefacts on display. The Power over Ethernet Ultrapod solution covers over 300 door locations and was deployed due to its ability to fit in with the aesthetics of the building as well as the fact that it can be successfully controlled by SLA batteries.

The second guest speaker on the day, namely Sir Stephen House (Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service), presented the Bravery Awards. These winners were hand-picked for their acts of outstanding courage in the face of adversity and, in 2018, are as follows:

Stanley Edwards and Fifi Koomson (G4S)

Last year while on duty in Walthamstow, East London, the crew members of a G4S van – among them Stanley Edwards and Fifi Koomson – were brutally set upon by armed robbers while replenishing an ATM machine. In what was both a sustained and violent attack, Edwards was shot in his right leg three times. Both crew members were dragged along the ground by the robbers during the attack. The other crew member was threatened with his life unless he opened the ATM. The gun was fired again at this crew member, but missed him. Despite the terrible onslaught of threats and physical violence, the crew members were able to contact the police and describe the getaway vehicle before securing the premises. Edwards is still recovering from the injuries he sustained on the day.

Amanda Bunn

After returning from her shift at her local hospital, Amanda Bunn was alerted to an attempted theft of an ATM. While the getaway driver of the vehicle which was to be used to transport the ATM was preoccupied in helping his accomplices to move it into position, Amanda fearlessly reached into the car and took the keys out of the ignition before running back across the road. It soon became clear to the offenders that they now had no means of transport available and they abandoned the ATM theft.

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA

In speaking about the British Security Awards, James Kelly (CEO at the BSIA) said: “I would like to pay tribute to our winners and finalists for some truly outstanding displays of customer service, teamwork, technical aptitude, bravery and courage, and for their overall commitment to both the organisations for whom they work and the industry they represent.”

Kelly continued: “Often, the work of our industry is under the radar when it comes to the contributions of the various services that are involved in dealing with the security incidents we read about locally and nationally being recognised. I hope that today’s celebration of these exemplary individuals on what is a national stage goes some way to remedying this situation going forward.”

In closing, Kelly remarked: “We look forward to the British Security Awards becoming the national event that  recognises the true talent, commitment and achievements of the industry’s finest.”

The British Security Awards 2018 were sponsored by Camberford Law plc (Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the arrival drinks reception), Securitas UK (the International Partnership Award), the National Security Inspectorate (the Apprentice Installer Award), the OCS Group (VIP Reception) and SaferCash (the Bravery Award).

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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