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SIA investigators discover unlicensed security at Accrington club

30 September 2020

LLOYD IRWIN has been sentenced at Blackburn Magistrates’ Court after he admitted working illegally as security at the Berkley Club in Accrington. Irwin, a former director of Hunter Irwin Security Specialists Ltd, appeared before the court via video link on Wednesday 2 September.

He had worked as a door supervisor for the company at The Berkley Club during December last year and again in January this year, despite not holding a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence.

The District Judge sentenced Irwin, who pleaded guilty, to a 12-month community order with an 80-hour unpaid work requirement. He was also ordered to pay a £90 victim surcharge and £760.40 in costs.

Responding to a report of unlicensed door staff, SIA investigators worked with Lancashire Police and Hyndburn Council’s licensing officer to uncover a pattern of illegal working at the club.

Pete Easterbrook of the SIA’s criminal investigation team said: “This should serve as a warning for anyone who’s tempted to pick up work as a door supervisor without an SIA licence. It should also make unscrupulous bosses think twice about hiring unlicensed staff to cover a shift at a busy time. It’s not worth it. You could find yourself with a criminal record that will end your career in security. Door supervision is a responsible profession that should be left to those who are properly qualified and licensed.”

Daniel Webb, who is also unlicensed, had worked at the club in January this year. He was employed by Hunter Irwin Security Specialists Ltd, who provided door supervisors to the premises under contract.

Webb, who appeared before the court at the same time as Irwin, has entered a ‘not guilty’ plea. His trial is due to take place at Burnley Magistrates’ Court on 17 December.

Denton door supervisor saves friend’s brother

Door supervisor Connor McMillan saved the life of a man who was stabbed near the Crown Point Shopping Car Park in Denton, Greater Manchester.

McMillan, 23, from Denton, works for ABM Group Ltd and is also a CCTV specialist. When he was on duty on Tuesday 7 July, he received a radio call from the Security Control Room telling him that a young man had been stabbed.

Without hesitation, McMillan grabbed a First Aid kit from the Control Room and rushed to the scene. The man who had been stabbed was lying on the floor clutching his chest. One of McMillan’s colleagues had caught the man who had carried out the stabbing.

McMillan checked whether the victim was conscious. He appeared to be in shock from the loss of blood. McMillan cleaned the wound and began packing it with bandages to stem the blood flow.

While attending to the male’s wounds, McMillan realised that the victim was the brother of a friend. He reassured him while keeping pressure on the wound. The Crown Point’s Shopping Centre manager, Alan Barker, and his colleague, Lisa Craig, ran to the scene to help and called the Emergency Services. McMillan continued to reassure the victim while Craig covered him to keep him warm. Between them they stabilised his condition and, when the ambulance arrived, paramedics took over.

The paramedics informed McMillan that, if he hadn’t carried out emergency First Aid, the man may well have died at the scene.

Commendation from employer

McMillan’s life-saving efforts were commended by his employer, ABM Ltd, who gave him their ABM Gold Hero Award. Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, also gave McMillan a Community Award.

When the SIA spoke with McMillan, he said: “I was mentally and physically numb because I’ve never had to deal with an incident like that before. I put my training to good use. I kept calm and didn’t think of the consequences. I did my best for the man by packing his wound and keeping him talking. Ultimately, I kept him alive.”

After the incident, McMillan discovered that the man had survived his injuries, but that he had suffered a punctured lung and damage to his heart.

McMillan continued: “As first responders, security operatives are taught First Aid. It has come in handy a few times. In a situation like this, you just have to do what you can. Your training and instinct take over. I think the role of security operatives is changing. The role we play now is not just about providing security. We also offer support, give basic First Aid and help people to feel safe.”

McMillan’s story is part of the #SIAHeroes campaign. He’s one of 400,000 licensed security operatives in the UK who have continued to work as critical workers and key workers, in turn protecting hospitals, sheltered accommodation, supporting social distancing in supermarkets and transacting other essential operations.

The SIA is promoting the industry’s dedication and commitment through the campaign by sharing inspiring stories of security operatives who are keeping the public safe and secure at this critical time.

*Read all of the #SIAHeroes stories online here