Police penalty scheme to target drunken violence in Camden pubs

Police are rolling out a points penalty system across Camden to crack down on drunken violence in pubs and bars.

Venues that sell alcohol will be graded on their ability to stop violent incidents, fires and health hazards.

Camden Police will use a “traffic light” system to give premises the all-clear, put them on a warning and threaten them with a licence review.

The scheme, which is backed by Camden Council, was piloted in 32 venues between January and August last year and saw a 37 per cent reduction in reported violent crime.

It was introduced to 1,500 licensed venues in Camden – the country’s fourth busiest borough for nightlife.


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Det Supt Richard Tucker, who transferred from Newham to Camden six weeks ago, told traders at The Roundhouse on Monday: “This scheme is not about the police coming along with a big hammer and saying ‘we’re going to sort you out’.”

More than 30,000 people come to Camden to eat and drink on Friday nights, rising to 40,000 on Saturdays.

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Pubs and clubs will rack up points depending on the seriousness of offences at the venue. The points remain on record for three months.

Some traders argued the points scheme might discourage crime reports.

However, general manager of the Blues Kitchen in Camden High Street, Andy Kerr, supported the scheme.

He said: “It seems like a pretty fair system and this way things are sorted out as early as possible.”

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