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Fewer police for Notting Hill Carnival

(First Edition)

ALMOST a third fewer police officers will be on duty at this weekend's Notting Hill carnival in west London, following the reductions in crime and public disorder over the past three years, writes Terry Kirby.

The decision reflects the increased organisation of the carnival - the second-largest event of its kind after Rio de Janerio's - which can attract more than 1 million people on Bank Holiday Sunday and Monday.

The last trouble at the carnival was in 1989, when youths threw bottles in the last minutes. Last year only about 100 crimes were reported. The Metropolitan Police said the reduction from 10,500 officers to about 8,000 this year did not mean it was being complacent. About 3,000 officers would police the peak period of Monday afternoon and evening, the same number as in previous years.