Warwickshire Police call on pubs and clubs to help prevent violence and disorder over Christmas

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Licensees across Warwickshire are being urged to call time on violent crime by helping prevent violence and disorder during the run up to Christmas and the New Year.

They are being urged to support Operation Christmas Presence being run by both forces throughout December to reduce the risk of alcohol-related violence and anti-social behaviour.

Scores of bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants are being visited by police officers and police community support officers in advance of the busiest dates and many will be displaying police posters, leaflets and beer mats urging customers to drink responsibly.

Licensees together with bar and security staff are being encouraged to better assess customers and to refuse to serve them if they believe they have already consumed too much alcohol.

Chief Inspector Helena Bennett, co-ordinator of Operation Christmas Presence, said: “We work very closely with the licensed trade throughout Warwickshire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin and Worcestershire.

“We receive tremendous co-operation from the vast majority of pubs, clubs and off-licenses. We want people to enjoy the night-time economy without fear of being caught up in an outbreak of violent disorder.

“It’s in the interests of everyone to prevent this happening and as such the police adopt a multi-agency approach during the festive period, working closely with colleagues from partner organisations.”

Councils, trading standards, the fire service, ambulance service, street pastors and marshals, community alcohol partnerships and taxi firms are among the agencies police are working with, as well as the licensed trade.

Police Safer Neighbourhood Teams, supported by officers from the Special Constabulary, will target underage drinking, confiscating alcohol from culprits.

Test purchases will be carried out by police and trading standards officers in some areas, using young volunteers to see if bar and off-licence staff are checking ages.

Young people are being encouraged to carry accredited PASS cards from the national Proof of Age Standards Scheme. Police are also liaising closely with the Security Industry Authority (SIA), making sure door staff are properly briefed and aware of their responsibilities, including wearing high visibility clothing and identity. Briefings will also be held with Pubwatch schemes.

Chief Inspector Bennett added: “It’s a team effort to help ensure people are not put at risk by drinking to the point where they lose all self-control. It will be a happier and more peaceful Christmas all round if people stay out of trouble and get home safe after a night out.”