June 20 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, March 21, 2013
THE difference between the town centre during daylight and after dark changes as quick as a light switch.
Revered Paul Daltry heads up the Town Pastors, a group of volunteers who take to the streets of Ipswich on Friday and Saturday nights to help people who are drunk and try and calm down any violent situations. They had out bottles of water, emergency blankets, chocolate bars and sweets to diffuse trouble.
Mr Daltry described the scene of the town after alcohol fuelled revellers spill out onto the streets as “sad and and at times heartbreaking”.
He said: “On a Saturday night, the difference between night and day after alcohol has become involved is like flicking a switch. The town becomes a completely different place.
“A lot of people are in town to have fun and to have a few drinks with friends and there is nothing wrong with that at all.
“But when some people drink excessively they become violent and things can become difficult.
“I think most Town Pastors are very used to the situation. It can be sad and at times heartbreaking because people get so drunk and start revealing upsetting things from their pasts.
“We do see a lot of worrying things on the streets and a lot of that is caused by alcohol.”
There are eight Town Pastor schemes across the county. In Ipswich volunteers go out on Friday and Saturday nights between 10am and 4pm.