Monsters get in shape at Blyth police station
Police officers are sharing their station with a gang of virtual monsters.
Blyth Neighbourhood Police Office has been caught up in the latest game craze, Pokemon Go.
Officers investigated after spotting large groups of people walking outside the police station, gazing at their phone screens.
They discovered that the police station at Arms Evertyne House on Quay Road had become a Poke gym overnight, attracting hundreds of gamers to the quayside to use the on-screen gym, keen to hone the fighting skills of their virtual monsters captured during the game.
Neighbourhood beat officer PC Billy Mulligan said: "I couldn't understand why we were getting so many young people turn up, but we worked it out seeing everyone on their phones. Having a gym here is great to meet so many people and for them to get to know us.
"We're telling them to enjoy their game safely, do it with their friends, not to wander off alone, to make sure they let their parents know when they're coming home, who they'll be with and roughly where they're thinking of going. Also reminding them to pay attention to their surroundings when playing so they don't get lost, or put themselves in danger."
Officers have also used the opportunity to get other crime prevention messages across and have been carrying out property marking on children's bikes and mobile devices.
They even offered the gamers a place of shelter when they saw lots of youngsters out in the rain, inviting them into the front office to dry off and play their game in the warm. Youngsters have also been getting to know their local neighbourhood policing team officers and have enjoyed a tour of the building.
PC Mulligan added: "In this job each day is different but I never expected our base would become a gym to fight virtual monsters and a popular gathering place for gamers."