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Emergency exercise in Alderney

Emergency exercise in Alderney

Sunday 12 March 2023

Emergency exercise in Alderney

Sunday 12 March 2023

Alderney is preparing today, incase of any emergencies which may hit the island leading to many people needing shelter at the same time.

Codenamed ‘Exercise Housemartin’ the rehearsal is taking place between 15:00 and 17:00 today with most of the action to be centred around The Butes.

A number of volunteers posing as temporarily homeless people will be there to receive emergency treatment and shelter as part of the exercise. 

A 'Rest Centre' will be set up by way of testing the island's response to a major incident that may lead to people needing short-term 24-hour emergency accommodation.

An incident needing such a response could include a severe storm or a catastrophe affecting properties in the island. 

The exercise will lead to the finalisation of an emergency accommodation plan which will be rehearsed on the day.

Paid officials, including from the States of Alderney and the emergency services, along with volunteers from organisations such as the RNLI Guild and Alderney Theatre Group will all play their part in the exercise.


Pictured: Alderney had to evacuate people from a campsite for real in 2019 when stormy weather hit Alderney week campers.

With a population of just over 2,000 the island does not often face emergency situations but in 2019 holidaymakers and locals staying at Saye Campsite during Alderney Week had to be cared for after gusts of more than 50mph swept over the island.

Around 150 people were camping at Saye at the time, with church halls, the Island Hall and the Masonic Lodge used as shelter until the wind died down and their tents could be put back up.

On that occasion, all hotels and guesthouses were already full with Alderney Week visitors, so the island had to pull on all of its resources to ensure everyone's safety.

Some of the campers relocated to stay with relatives, friends or holiday acquaintances, but others were taken in by the organisers of the temporary shelters set up ahead of the windy weather.


Alderney Week campers face evacuation

Alderney works together on evacuation plan


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