Your Security Is Our Business

Bodyguard to the stars runs bouncer courses From Bournemouth …

A STAR S bodyguard may not be an obvious presence on the red carpet – but that s the point.

At the height of Harry Potter mania, Emma Watson s bodyguard was better at blending in than most, due to being petite, blonde… and a woman.

Danielle Curzon, 27, provided security for Emma Watson for a year.

Now she runs courses in Bournemouth to help other women, and men, gain a qualification as a door supervisor through her firm Samurai Security.

Danielle has been working in the security industry for eight years. She originally worked in nightclubs and bars as a door supervisor before moving on to provide security for celebrities.

She runs the SIA courses at Phoenix MMA, where she is also a referee for their regular fight night events.

Door supervisors, or bouncers, are a highly visible presence on the stag-and-hen filled streets of Bournemouth and Poole.

But beyond the smart suits and walkie talkies, who are you really entrusting your safety to?

As you d expect, all licensed supervisors have to go through a rigorous training programme and get accreditation from an official body.

The maximum penalty for unlicensed door staff is 5,000 and/or six months in jail for the venue owner.

You may have noticed that teams of security staff are becoming increasingly mixed, with many women joining the crew.

As the night-time economy has flourished, so has the number of private security staff, said Open University criminology lecturer Dr Louise Westmarland, who interviewed 50 female bouncers as part of a report on UK nightlife.

This has led to greater regulation, with bouncers having to be licensed by SIA.

That means it s much more difficult for someone to become a bouncer if, say, they have a criminal record.

SIA run door supervisor courses in venues throughout the county, one of which is held at the Phoenix MMA Academy on Wimborne Road1.

But step inside the academy cage to where the workshop takes place and you may be in for a surprise.

As well as Danielle running the course, there are plenty of ladies queuing up to gain the qualification, too.

It s not just a nightclub course – the SIA qualification allows you to work in retail security by day, or clubs and entertainment venues by night, Danielle said.

Physical intervention of course forms a part of the course but restraint is emphasised at all times.

We have to stop and think before any intervention. Is there a need? How does this person compare to me?

Is this person threatening to use weapons? Do I want to hurt this person?

Years ago, I tried to break up a fight between two girls when I saw one of them was carrying a syringe. I backed off, as I had been taught, and waited for the police to arrive.

Apart from that, I ve never felt intimidated or threatened in a door situation.

You have to be confident, and trust the team around you.

By no means do women door supervisors get an easy ride because of their sex.

Many people believe that women security staff are by definition a calming, violence-diffusing element, said Dr Westmarland. But they report that there s usually no time for anyone to turn round and say right, you re the calming influence, can you sort this out ?

But despite the obvious risks, many women are signing up for the SIA course.

Juta Veji, 24, took the course last weekend and is confident she has the skills and experience to deal with whatever a shift on the door may bring.

The best part of the course was the fact that Danielle has done the job herself – she gave us lots of examples from her own experience, Juta said.

Having worked in insurance and at an estate agents, security work is a far cry from Juta s previous experience.

I think a door supervisor job is just like any other. We need to follow the rules, be professional and treat customers fairly.

I don t think it will be any harder for me just because I am a female.

I am looking forward to finding a good job with a solid team to back me up.

At the end of the day, I am not going to be there on my own and nobody expects me to fight.

References

  1. ^ Wimborne Road (www.bournemouthecho.co.uk)

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Bodyguard to the stars runs bouncer courses From Bournemouth …

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