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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 March, 2004, 09:54 GMT
SOS bus to rescue binge drinkers
Towan Beach
Newquay has been considering a number of ways to help drinkers
Drunk youngsters could be picked up from the streets of Newquay by a special bus and taken away to sober up.

The so-called SOS bus would collect inebriated young people before dropping them at a nearby church hall to be looked after by volunteers.

The plan, from the town's community safety partnership, follows trouble with drinkers in the Cornish resort.

This week the government announced a string of measures to combat the problem of binge drinking in Britain.

Plans for the Safe and Sound (SOS) bus are still in their early stages and no venue to take the revellers to has been agreed, although negotiations are under way with a local church.

Young people should not be in a position where their personal safety is at risk
Dave George, RCSP
The partnership, made up of local councils and emergency services, says it will free police resources and reduce the number of arrests for anti-social behaviour.

The SOS bus has been developed from a similar scheme in Norwich which offers advice and help for young people.

Dave George, from the Restormel Community Safety Partnership, said: "Young people should not be in a position where their personal safety is at risk.

"Finance and other issues have still got to be dealt with, but the emergency services have all agreed it is a good idea, so the outlook is optimistic."

Workers from the government's drug and alcohol campaign, Talk to Frank, will also be in Newquay for the first week of the summer holidays trying to educate young revellers about sensible drinking.

They will meet community leaders from the Cornish resort to try to overcome the problems of anti-social behaviour, which local residents claim is ruining Newquay.

Darren Hall of Talk to Frank, said: "The police cannot allow a person who is very drunk to be left on their own.

"They end up having to put them in a cell.

"But if they can get young people back to a place of safety where there is someone else to look after them and make sure they are ok, that frees up the police to deal with the real issues.

"I think it will be a great resource for young people, if there is a problem, to be able to get back to their caravan sites or the cottage they are staying in."




SEE ALSO:
Police raise rowdiness fear
13 Oct 03  |  Cornwall
Alcohol ban plan for beach
24 Sep 03  |  Cornwall


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