Civil Defence Supply

Research, development, testing, manufacture, supply and training of specialised Defence and Law Enforcement products

British Armed Services adopt  CDS equipment and tactics - 2001 to today……

The British Army has been committed to Northern Ireland for many years and is as experienced in serious Public Disorder management as the Royal Ulster Constabulary.  Prior to 2000 Army public order equipment was outdated with many items over 20 years old.  The old Army riot shields were steel covered frames in the 1970’s and later a clear polycarbonate flat-blade shield was introduced however both equipment and tactics were due for review and that opportunity came about after an annual protest called Drumcree VI in 2000 when excessive violence erupted with numerous soldiers injured.

History 8



British Army ‘riot control’ in Northern Ireland originally was reliant on combat-armed infantry tactics, the frequent use of CS gas and heavily armoured vehicles.  Early riot kit was crude adaptations to standard combat equipment with radical changes occurring after Bloody Sunday

Drumcree VII sees introduction of CDS Equipment & Tactics by British Army Northern Ireland

In early 1990 Civil Defence Supply were invited to Headquarters Northern Ireland to advise on the feasibility of not only totally re-equipping and re-training all Army personnel in Northern Ireland but assist establishing a training facility at Magilligan where joint Army and RUC training could take place prior to Drumcree VII.


This is maybe the most successful joint-operation CDS has ever delivered and every stage of the plan was successfully delivered with the result that Drumcree VII went without any injuries or major confrontations and was a set-piece tactical deployment as both civil powers (RUC and Army) both used identical equipment and fundamental tactics.  A new handbook was created called the Northern Ireland Public Order Tactical Memoire or NI PO TAM which to this day remains the British Army standard. CDS staff assisted not only with its drafting but provided many of the line-drawings and imagery.  Those same tactics and equipment were eventually rolled-out to the entire UK Armed Services and Army, Navy, Air Force, Royal Marines, PARA’s and Military Police all use Civil Defence Supply equipment and tactics. Every item is now UK MoD and NATO Stock Codified. CDS riot equipment was then deployed on all UK overseas peace-keeping missions from Bosnia onwards  -  See CDS equipment in front-line use below.

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