Under-age drinkers not welcome

Lytham Club Day
Lytham Club Day
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Lytham Club Day visitors will be targeted on trains and buses as police crack down on under-age drinking at the event.

And they have revealed they will be using a special base at the YMCA to deal with drunkenness and medical incidents.

In recent years the annual event has become widely associated with under-age drinking.

Insp Keith Ogle, of Fylde police, said it was crucial this Saturday’s event remained one for everyone to enjoy.

He said: “Quite clearly Lytham Club Day is a family event.

“We want people to come and have a social day.

“In the past we’ve had the parade in the morning – but people have gone daft afterwards. Anyone under-age caught with alcohol will have it confiscated.

“Police will meet people getting on buses at Squires Gate and travelling down to Lytham, and similarly trains arriving from Blackpool and Preston at Lytham railway station. We want to talk to people and assist them in enjoying the day – but we will not tolerate juvenile drinking.”

Insp Ogle added drinking on Lytham Green will be allowed, but anti-social behaviour will see the immediate removal of any alcohol.

Other police measures include instructing every pub in Lytham to have doormen in place outside, while a St John Ambulance centre will be set up at Lytham YMCA to provide treatment in case of medical incidents, including dealing with drunkenness.

Pub managers in the town spoke to The Gazette about the measures they will have to deal with on the day.

Gary Haydock, from The Ship and Royal, said police have warned that a pub can be closed early, if deemed necessary. He said: “It all depends on the nature of the day – the police will advise us.

“If everything is going smoothly we will carry on until the normal time. If it’s not responsible we’ll be forced to close early.”

Taps manager Steve Norris said Lytham Club Day will be his first and said it is the only day in the year the pub is required to have door staff.

He said: “Being fairly new to Lytham Club Day I couldn’t really comment too much on the day, but it is the one day of the year we are instructed to have doormen.

“We’ll be open at our normal times from 11am to midnight and it will be business as usual. Clearly though any anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated.”

Lytham Coun Brenda Ackers said she welcomed the tightening of controls: “I think it’s excellent. At a recent Lytham Business group meeting we were told of the plans to stop people bringing in huge amounts of booze.

“We do not want the town deteriorating into an area with a lot of anti-social behaviour.

“It used to be such a lovely club day – we want to get it back to a family type of club day. Families with kids cannot enjoy themselves if they are nervous about what is going on around them. I am fully in support of it.”