Thurso Pubwatch reveals number of life bans issued

Seventeen people have received life bans from all licensed premises in the west of Caithness since 2013.

The operators of the Thurso Pubwatch scheme revealed the figure while maintaining that the threat of the permanent and temporary bans had resulted in a positive effect on behaviour in local pubs and clubs.

At the same time, police disclosed that they arrested 50 people in Caithness during February – a substantially higher number than normal.

A significant cause of the spike in those ending up in custody was drink-fuelled violence in and outside pubs and nightclubs.

Under the Pubwatch initiative, anybody banned from one pub is automatically excluded from the pubs in the area covered by the scheme.

The length of a ban can run from three months to a lifetime, depending on the seriousness of the offence.

The ban also applies to restaurants, supermarkets and off-licences.

A Pubwatch scheme ran in Wick for the east of the county from 2010 to 2013 but it is no longer in operation.

Story and photograph courtesy of John O’Groat Journal and Caithness Courier www.johnogroat-journal.co.uk