Preston Police’s Licensing Team have been promoting positive drinking messages this week as part of Alcohol Awareness Week to raise awareness of the harms associated with binge drinking.
The week started with 50 licensees from city centre licensed premises attending a meeting to discuss how they can work together to promote the city safely following the achievement of the Purple Flag award for a second year – new accreditation scheme that recognises excellence in the management of town and city centres at night.
Test purchasing was carried out across the city where young volunteers attempted to purchase alcohol with only one premises caught selling alcohol to a 16 year old girl showing that premises working together with police and trading standards officers has had a positive effect. This premises, a city centre convenience shop has since received a Fixed Penalty Notice and incurred a £80 fine.
Posters and beer mats were also distributed to raise awareness around underage drinking and the effects of excessive alcohol consumption.
A Licensing review application for 53 Degrees was submitted to Preston City Council following concerns that crime and disorder objectives were not being adhered to at the premise. Other authorities including Trading Standards, Health and Safety and Environmental Health will also be consulted and a review hearing will be held in December.
During the Preston Light switch on officers worked in the city centre handing out bottles of water containing safe drinking messages advising people to space their drinks throughout the night with soft drinks and water.
Alcohol Harm Reduction Officer PC Julie Stewart said: “Multi agency visits continue to be carried out by police, Preston City Council, Environmental Health and Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service at licensed premises across the city to ensure compliance. A knife test purchase operation is also planned for Saturday.
“We are also opening a Safe Haven for Christmas revellers at the old Post Office building behind the Cenotaph in the city centre from 1st December until the New Year where street pastors, taxi Marshalls and paramedics will be on hand.”