1. ITV Report

How police are tackling underage drinking in Blyth

The project aims to tackle underage drinking Photo:

Police in Blyth are using painted messages on doorsteps to tackle underage drinking.

Members of the town's Community Alcohol Partnership say the idea is to remind shoppers not to buy alcohol for under 18s. Warning messages have been spray painted on the doorsteps of 30 stores where alcohol is available.

Police are also speaking to staff reminding them of their responsibilities to make sure the alcohol they sell doesn't get into the hands of children.

“This activity demonstrates that our officers are listening to the concerns of local people and are working closely with partners to protect the vulnerable and tackle anti-social behaviour head on. Under-age drinking can effect individuals and local communities and I give my full backing this creative approach to bring about positive change for the residents of Blyth.”

– Vera Baird QC, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner

"We have a really good relationship with the stores in the town and they're happy to help us remind people to ensure alcohol is only sold to adults to drink, not to be given or sold on to children.

"We'd like to thank the 30 stores who have supported the CAP by adopting the warning signage outside of their stores.

"We also want to get this important message across to adults that there are serious penalties if they are caught for buying alcohol for children. These so called 'proxy sales' attract a £90 Fixed Penalty Notice.

"Children shouldn't have access to alcohol - those who do drink make themselves vulnerable as well as risking ill health. These youngsters could be at risk of child sexual exploitation and are also much more likely to get involved in causing anti-social behaviour which also bring problems to the wider community. We want to safeguard our children from this sort of harm.

"We will always take action when we find that adults have been buying alcohol for children."

– Neighbourhood Beat Manager, PC Billy Mulligan

“This is a great example of how agencies can use innovative ideas to raise awareness of alcohol-related issues.

"As well as enforcement, it is important we educate and protect young people from the dangers of alcohol and I am pleased so many local traders have come on board."

– County Councillor Liz Simpson, Chair of Safer Northumberland