Crackdown on town’s under-age drinkers

UNDER-AGE drinkers have been targeted in Ashington town centre by police following complaints from residents.

Operation Sandy was a joint venture between officers from the neighbourhood policing team and Trading Standards and was set up after concerns from local residents about under 18s drinking in Ashington town centre.

Under-age test purchasers visited various bars in the town, with three premises serving them alcohol.

In those that served alcohol, both the member of staff that sold the drink and the premises’ supervisor were given fixed penalty tickets.

Sergeant Donna Rose, from Ashington neighbourhood team, said: “While the majority of licensed premises are well run, we won’t tolerate the small minority who flout the law by serving to under-age drinkers.

“These type of partnership operations are run in response to community concerns and will continue as long as we get information about pubs and bars who sell to under 18s.”

Jimmy Power, Northumberland County Council’s business and consumer protection manager, added: “In response to local intelligence, we were able to carry out an effective operation targeting premises that were prepared to sell alcohol to children.

“It is a criminal offence to supply alcohol to a person under the legal age and this exercise sends out a clear message to local pubs and retailers that it will not be tolerated.”