Chelmsford wins Diageo National Pubwatch Award for contribution to community safety

Left to right: Lord Roy Kennedy, Steve Baker Chair NPW, Nick Halle Chair Chelmsford Pubwatch, Vicky Ford MP and Mellisa Yorke Diageo GB

The Pubwatch scheme, Chelmsford City, has been awarded the prestigious Diageo National Pubwatch Award for its significant role working in partnership to reduce violence and NTE crime in the city by 45%. The scheme was also commended for its work to reduce the use of fake ID and allay fears about acid attacks by distributing ‘acid attack’ kits to member premises.

At a packed ceremony in the House of Lords last night (23/10/18), attended by MPs, Lords and notable names from the pub industry, Chelmsford City Pubwatch was crowned winner of the Diageo National Pubwatch Awards for 2018.

Melissa Yorke, Sales Director GB On-Trade, commented:

“Partnership organisations like Pubwatch make a real difference to local communities and it is brilliant to see so many schemes getting involved and making an impact through this year’s Awards programme. I was hugely impressed by the work undertaken by Chelmsford City that has had such a positive impact in reducing crime amongst member organisations’ premises. I also want to congratulate Chester and Wrexham for their outstanding work”.

At Diageo, the on-trade is a crucial part of our business and we recognise its vital contribution
to the night time economy as well as to the role it plays within the community and society more widely to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all. That is why we are proud supporters of this year’s Award and commend all the good work it has done so far.”

Now in its seventh year, the National Pubwatch Awards, champion the work of local Pubwatch schemes throughout the UK and their efforts to provide safe drinking environments for customers and staff in all licensed premises. Entrants are judged by a panel of National Pubwatch Committee members and industry experts who identify the scheme which made the greatest contribution to its community.

Each local Pubwatch works in partnership with local police to reduce alcohol-related crime, while providing local pubs with information and guidance on how to ensure a safe drinking environment in their community.

Chelmsford City’s Pubwatch submission received praise across the board by the judges for its contribution to reducing violence and NTE crime in the city centre by 45%. The scheme represents 95% of city centre venues working in partnership with the police to tackle key issues including reducing the use of Fake ID and allaying fears about acid attacks

The Chelmsford scheme was described by the local Chief Superintendent as ‘without question the stand-out Pubwatch team’. In particular it was recognised for the work it has done on drug searching and seizures – having utilised a drug safe provided by Essex Police in order to meet legal obligations. This has led to a significant increase in drugs seizures in the area.

Also recognised as ‘highly commended’ at the awards were the Chester Pubwatch, which was lauded for its training and safeguarding work, and Wrexham Pubwatch, which the judges congratulated for the ‘Drink Less, Enjoy More’ campaign which focussed on refusing to serve drunks and training for door staff in the area to help them identify and protect vulnerable individuals.

Nick Halle, Chairman, Chelmsford City Pubwatch:

‘Chelmsford City Pubwatch has forged an excellent partnership with Essex Police and other organisations and we work hard to provide our staff and customers with a safe night out. It’s great that our efforts have been recognised and I’m really proud to accept this trophy on behalf of our members’

Speaking at the awards Steve Baker, Chairman of National Pubwatch, said:

“Our finalists have yet again demonstrated that local Pubwatch schemes are working extremely hard to make licensed premises a safe and secure environment to work and socialise. It is wonderful to see the Diageo National Pubwatch Awards go from strength-to-strength, and I want to congratulate Chelmsford on their thoroughly deserved award. I am very grateful to Diageo for supporting our efforts to promote good practice and the benefits of partnership working, and I hope we can work closely together to achieve our ambitions of promoting responsible drinking for years to come.”

2018 finalists. Left to right: David Thomas – Chair Wrexham, Nick Halle Chair – Chelmsford, Jenni Haken – Chair Chester