New clampdown on underage drinkers

A FELIXSTOWE bar which was at the centre of an investigation into under-age drinking has installed the latest technology to keep out youngsters.Bar Blue boss Rikki Double said the venue was committed to playing its part in the resort's campaign against young teenage drinkers and so had launched a membership scheme to ensure it knows who is on the premises.

A FELIXSTOWE bar which was at the centre of an investigation into under-age drinking has installed the latest technology to keep out youngsters.

Bar Blue boss Rikki Double said the venue was committed to playing its part in the resort's campaign against young teenage drinkers and so had launched a membership scheme to ensure it knows who is on the premises.

The move follows a police operation last month in which undercover officers accompanied 15 years olds into bars and nightclubs on the seafront.

The two youngsters were refused service at every venue except Bar Blue in Sea Road. Mr Double blamed the situation on human error at a busy time in the evening and said everything possible was being done to check ages.

He said the new membership card scheme should end any problems once and for all.

"The software, provided by Q-Systems enables us to take customers details, including ID," said Mr Double.

Most Read

"The details are then logged into our onsite computer, a photo is then taken and the customer is given a membership card.

"On future visits to the venue the card is swiped and the individuals details, including picture appears on our screen.

"This means that once ID has been shown and logged into our data base a customer does not need to carry important documents such as a passport on a night out but simply has to provide a membership card with its unique bar code for proof of age."

Mr Double had discussed the scheme with Felixstowe police commander Inspector Andy Bushell, and it had been seen as a positive move forward to stamp out the threat of under age drinking.

"We would encourage customers to call to the venue at any time during opening hours to produce their ID and be added to our data base," he said.

Insp Bushell has pledged to continue the crackdown on under-age drinking as part of the resort's Nightsafe scheme.

He has warned that undercover officers will mount future operations to test whether drink is sold to youngsters and has not ruled out taking action against licensees who fail the test.

Similar test purchasing operations in off licences, corner shops and supermarkets have had excellent success with staff at all premises targeted in the last run asking the youngsters sent in to buy booze for their age or ID.

n What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter