Project Servator is the name given to unpredictable, highly visible police deployments carried out by Avon and Somerset Police and other police forces designed to disrupt a wide range of criminal activity.
The tactics aim to identify and disrupt hostile reconnaissance – the information gathering a criminal does when planning to commit a criminal act, including terrorist attacks.
Our officers are experienced and specially trained to spot the tell-tale signs that someone may be carrying out hostile reconnaissance or preparing to commit a crime. They work with security staff to look out for those signs and take action.
Specially trained uniformed officers will turn up unannounced at various locations to carry out deployments. These will be unpredictable, so they could happen at any time and last for different amounts of time.
The officers will be supported by other assets and security measures – some you’ll be able to see and some you won’t – such as plain clothed officers, police dogs and horses, armed officers, CCTV operators, Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) and police drones. Vehicle checkpoints are also often carried out.
As part of the deployments, officers will hand out leaflets explaining what Project Servator is, while you may also see posters on display.
Our officers also engage with the online community, sharing information about Project Servator and its successes.
On Twitter, follow #ProjectServator.
No – we are there to keep you safe. We encourage the public to speak to officers during deployments and they’ll be happy to explain what they’re doing and answer any questions you have.
Businesses, security guards, and retailers have a vital role to play too. We rely on their support and vigilance to ensure their tactics in the fight against crime are successful.
We have a training initiative for security and retail staff to help protect the public by ensuring they know how to spot suspicious activity, and how to report it.
You can play a vital role by being vigilant when you are out and about and reporting anything that doesn’t feel right.
You’ll never get in trouble for reporting a genuine concern, and we will always take your report seriously – whether it’s an unattended item or someone acting suspiciously.
Don’t leave it to someone else to report it.
We also ask you to remain vigilant when you're out and about and to follow national ACT (Action Counters Terrorism) guidance. Find more information on what to look out for here.