Police clampdown on Ribble Valley underage drinkers

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A crackdown on underage drinking over the bank holiday weekend has been hailed a success.

As school leavers celebrated their GCSE results, Clitheroe police, in conjunction with Lancashire County Council and Trading Standards, took to the streets of the Ribble Valley in a bid to tackle alcohol-fuelled disorder and to spot vulnerable children and take them home to their parents.

The Community Alcohol Network Safe operation, which took place on Friday evening, saw six alcohol seizures and live tweet updates were posted from the streets.

In addition, officers swooped on licensed premises in a bid to prevent sales of alcohol to the underaged.

Clitheroe’s PC Martin Midgely, who co-ordinated the operation, said: “The emphasis is on safeguarding and not enforcement. We are trying to protect vulnerable children in the Ribble Valley from alcohol, drugs and sexual exploitation.

“We hope to continue with the initiative throughout the year. It was a very productive evening for us, although not as busy as it might have been because of the rain.”

Clitheroe Town Mayor Coun. Kevin Horkin joined members of the Community Alcohol Network on patrol with a dozen volunteer special constables in Clitheroe and Sabden during the operation.

The Mayor, who is also chairman of the Ribble Valley Community Safety Partnership, which helps fund the CANSafe initiative, said: “We have a burgeoning night-time economy in the Ribble Valley and it’s important we are aware of potential problems with young people early on.”