Under-age alcohol operation targets pubs for the first time

Posted on Thursday 30th December 2010 at 11:26 am by SH (Editor)

Police and South Gloucestershire Council targeted pubs in an under-age alcohol test-purchase operation for the first time on Friday 10th December 10.

Two 16-year-old girls volunteered to try to buy alcohol at six pubs – two in Emersons Green and the rest in Kingswood, Longwell Green, Pucklechurch and Soundwell.

Neighbourhood Inspector Kevin Thatcher said: “I’m delighted that these clearly under-age girls were unable to buy alcohol at any of the pubs we visited.”

“We regularly work with Trading Standards running this sort of operation to see if off-licences will sell drink to under-18s. This is the first time we’ve run the operation at pubs in South Gloucestershire.”

“I understand that people may have concerns about under-age girls going into a pub environment, but there were plain clothes police officers inside the premises as the girls went in and they were followed in by Trading Standards officers.”

Police and Trading Standards officers work closely with licensees to ensure they are aware of their responsibilities to keep drunken nuisance and anti-social behaviour to a minimum. They told licensees of their plans to run this sort operation at a licensing event in the summer.

All the licensees of the pubs visited in the operation will be written to thanking them for playing their part in maintaining safe communities in South Gloucestershire.

Police and Trading Standards will continue to run checks on pubs and off-licences to make sure no one is selling alcohol to under-18s.

Insp Thatcher said: “We run these checks because we know that anyone who drinks to excess is potentially harming their health, putting themselves at greater risk of accidental injury, making themselves more vulnerable to crime and of becoming involved in anti-social behaviour – and that those risks are even greater for children.”

Cllr Heather Goddard, South Gloucestershire Council’s executive member for communities, said: “On behalf of Trading Standards and the police I would like to congratulate our publicans for refusing to serve alcohol to the girls who were clearly under age. It is this kind of preventative work which goes on behind the scenes that allows the council and its partners to work together to ensure that communities in South Gloucestershire continue to be a safe place to live and work.”

Source: Avon and Somerset Police

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