ARBROATH Pubwatch, an initiative designed to enhance the safety of the night-time economy for both patrons and staff, was formally launched at an event at RM Condor last Wednesday evening.
The scheme got off to a flying start with a total of 16 local premises having already signed up to Pubwatch and there are indications that many more will follow in the coming weeks and months.
Pubwatch is operated by local licensed premises and, in simple terms, allows staff at premises in the town to communicate with each other to deter violence and anti-social behaviour in their establishments.
All premises that are part of Pubwatch are easily identified by the posters displayed at their entrances.
The scheme also provides a platform for the owners and staff of licensed premises in Arbroath to meet with Tayside Police and discuss shared issues, including information about individuals who are causing problems.
The benefit of this close working is that those who are identified as being involved in violent, disruptive criminal or anti-social behaviour will to be banned from all Pubwatch premises, reducing the threat or fear to the majority who simply want to enjoy their night out.
Chief Inspector Sandra Richard confirmed that alcohol is a contributory factor in many of the incidents which occur over the weekend which the police have to deal with.
She said: “Tayside Police fully supports any initiative that aims to reduce criminal activity. It is reassuring to see licensed premises taking a hands-on approach to ensuring the safety of both their patrons and staff.
“Alcohol-fuelled disorder will not be tolerated and the Pubwatch scheme will allow ourselves, RM Condor and the licensed premises in the area to work closely together and ensure that everybody has a safe and enjoyable night out.”
Councillor John Whyte, convener of Angus licensing Board, commented: “I am delighted that the licensed premises in Arbroath are taking a pro-active approach to deterring violence and anti social behaviour in their premises. I firmly believe the launch of Pubwatch will benefit the local community by providing a safer drinking environment.”