BARS and pubs in St Helens town centre have been praised for passing a police and trading standards crackdown on underage drinkers with flying colours.
All ten licensed premises tested asked for the 16-year-old volunteer’s ID and then refused to serve them an alcoholic drink.
Inspector Stuart Knowles said: “These results are very pleasing and are a result of the work we have done with pubs and bars in the town centre in recent months.
“It’s a two-way thing - we make it clear what they need to do to keep to their licensing conditions and they raise issues with us that we can help them deal with.
“No-one wants our young people to get into trouble which is often fuelled by alcohol and the reduction in anti-social behaviour in the town centre makes it a more attractive place for people to enjoy a night out.”
Police officers supervised two 16-year-old police cadets - a boy and a girl - as they went into each premises to try to buy a drink.
Councillor Richard McCauley, St Helens Council’s cabinet member for environmental protection, said: “Officers tell me that a number of years ago the situation regarding underage drinking was so bad that when a similar exercise was conducted, with the assistance of two fifteen year old volunteers, they were served alcohol in fifteen of sixteen bars tested!
“We must, however, not rest on our laurels.”