CITY centre businesses in Durham are being urged to be prepared for a terrorist incident in the wake of the recent attack in London.

With shops now ready for an increased footfall as people get ready for Christmas, business leaders are passing on advice from senior police officers.

They are keen to stress there is no specific threat in Durham but have emphasised that there remains a ‘substantial risk’ of terrorism across the country.

It follows the London Bride knife attack carried out by 28-year-old Usman Khan, which left two people dead and three injured.

Adam Deathe, engagement manager with Durham Business Improvement District, said: “On Friday a heinous and cowardly terrorist incident was once again mounted on the streets of the UK.

“We are stressing that despite the most recent attack, the national level of threat has not changed and remains at substantial.

“Please familiarise yourself and colleagues with your policy on what to do in the event of something like this happening in Durham.

“Though it is unlikely and there is no evidence or information to suggest that such is planned, we have to be prepared.

“The official advice and the advice that we encourage you to follow is 'Run, Hide, Tell'.

“Familiarise yourself with what that means for you and your business.”

Superintendent Richard Allen, head of neighbourhood policing, with Durham Constabulary, said his thoughts were with the family and friends of those caught up in last week’s attack.

He said: “Since the national threat level was lowered to substantial earlier this month, counter terrorism policing continue to remind businesses and the wider community that the threat is still very real.

“Substantial means that an attack is likely, and Friday’s tragic event has unfortunately shown us that this is very much the case.

“While we investigate the circumstances, this incident has been a reminder to us all that attacks can take place at any time and without warning.

“Therefore it is vitally important everyone remains alert but not alarmed.

“We, along with our partners in the intelligence services are doing everything we can right across the country to help prevent further attacks.”