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Marine Support Unit


Wapping Police Station

The Marine Support Unit (MSU) is based at Wapping Police Station on the River Thames, a short distance from Tower Bridge. The role of the Unit is twofold:

  • To provide a visible 24 hour presence on the Thames in support of the broader river community.
  • To provide 24-hour specialist marine support for the MPS on the Thames, its tributaries and any waterway within the Metropolitan Police Area.

The Metropolitan Police Area incorporates 35 miles of the River Thames. To achieve effective safety and security for the wider London Port Area (a distance of 95 miles) the MSU frequently conducts operations as far as the eastern limits of the Thames estuary.

The MSU have adopted a multi-agency approach, as working in partnership is critical to our effectiveness. Partners include the Port of London Authority, Kent and Essex Police, Special Branch, Customs and Excise, Immigration, London Coastguard, RNLI, London Fire Brigade and the Port Health Authority.

Many of these agencies are members of the Thames Counter Terrorism Partnership. This partnership group works to achieve effective joined up security along the Thames.