A campaign to tackle alcohol-related crime and anti-social behaviour in Northamptonshire has been praised.
The county was one of the first pilots for the Home Office’s Local Alcohol Action Areas and has launched a number of schemes funded by local businessess to address alcohol issues.
Pubwatch schemes have been launched in Northampton, Kettering, Corby, Wellingborough and Daventry, while Corby, Kingston and St David’s have successfully introduced Community Alcohol Partnerships. There is a countywide Best Bar None scheme, which was successful in bidding for a business grant of £1,500 to redevelop the scheme and create a bespoke training package for licensees.
Street Pastors are now operating in Northampton, Kettering, Corby, Wellingborough and Rushden, offering a helping hand to clubbers and pub goers who may need assistance during the evening.
A spokesman for the Home Office said data showed that recorded crime attributable to alcohol has fallen by 18 percent over the last five years, while alcohol related road traffic accidents has also fallen by 15 percent in the last three years.
Vicki Ross, head of prevention and community impact, Northants PCC from Northamptonshire Local Alcohol Action Area, said: “Strong partnerships are fundamental to making Northamptonshire the Safest Place in the Country and we are proud of what has been achieved with our partners to enable the public to experience the best Northamptonshire has to offer.
“The development of our bespoke “Best Bar None” scheme with the Carlsberg Food and Drink awards in the county and the support of the Portman Group is a great example of how local and national industry can work in partnership to empower innovative local delivery,” she added.
Councillor Tony Page, Licensing spokesman on the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, said: “The night-time economy is a major contributor to vibrant town centres and social activity and councils want to ensure the mix of bars, clubs and restaurants is appealing to residents and visitors.
“However, there are also challenges associated with the night time economy, which are beyond the resources of any individual organisation or business to resolve.
“We therefore welcome these initiatives to provide targeted solutions to local problems, and the work of the Portman group to coordinate them. Together, councils, businesses, the drinks industry and local police can work to create safe, enjoyable high streets and evening experiences,” Councillor Page added.