STIRLING Council, Forth Valley Police and GoForth Stirling have met with local nightlife venues to join forces in an effort to make the area’s pubs and clubs safer.
Meetings between the police, council, GoForth and local venues resulted in the ‘Pubwatch’ scheme being relaunched.Pubwatch is an information sharing initiative which facilitates communication between the different clubs and bars to help curb anti-social behaviour.
This helps venues to coordinate their efforts to tackle unacceptable behaviour, with bans applying to all licensed premises taking part in the scheme.
Several high profile businesses in Stirling city centre have already signed up with Pubwatch, including Fubar, Wetherspoons and Kilted Kangaroo.
Bans with a minimum term of one year have already been given to two people since the scheme started, barring them from the eight premises currently onboard with Pubwatch.
The police and GoForth, who manage the Stirling Business Improvement District, have invested in radios for Pubwatch venues, which staff can use to quickly share information about troublemakers with other venues and law enforcement.
Go Forth Stirling project director Danielle McRorie-Smith said: “Relaunching Pubwatch is a big step which highlights the efforts all premises are going to [take] to share best practice and work together to combat anti-social behaviour.
“Ensuring everyone has a radio will also improve police/licensee liaison by proving effective two-way communications so everyone can talk to each other and share details of anything relevant which is going on.”
Following reports of a recent increase in spiking incidents, GoForth have also invested in ‘StopTopps’. StopTopps are designed to add a protective layer to drinks, and will be distributed to venues for customers’ use.
A police spokesperson commented: “Pubwatch will be an excellent addition to the night-time economy in Stirling. Pubwatch has been a proven success in various towns and cities across Scotland.
“It will provide an additional layer of safety and reassurance to businesses, residents and patrons.”
Pubwatch Stirling hope that the message will spread and more nightlife spots sign up for the scheme: “Our message is clear – anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated within or in the vicinity of licensed premises.”
Alongside the relaunched Pubwatch scheme and GoForth investments, council-funded taxi rank marshals and street pastors will also be available to reduce disorder and help vulnerable people when venues close.