Welcome to Community Alcohol Partnerships

Poplar launchTower Hamlets council launched its third Community Alcohol Partnership (CAP), to tackle underage drinking and anti-social behaviour in Poplar on May 25. 

CAPs are partnerships between local authorities, police, schools, retailers, neighbourhood groups and health providers. These organisations work together to empower communities to tackle the issue by reducing the sale of alcohol to young people, advise them on the dangers of drinking and provide alcohol-free activities with local youth services and charities.

The Poplar CAP follows a resident survey which highlighted concerns regarding alcohol related crime and lack of facilities. It is led by Tower Hamlets Council which is partnering with a wide range of stakeholders including Poplar Harca Housing Association, the Spotlight Youth Centre, St Paul’s Way School, Langdon Park School, the Rapid Response Team and Compass, the young people’s substance misuse service. 

The CAP will work with retailers to offer guidance and training to combat underage sales of alcohol and proxy purchase, where adults buy alcohol on behalf of young people. It will also work with schools and youth services to engage with young people and encourage them to attend youth centres.

Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs said: 

“There is a growing concern about the levels and impact of underage drinking. We are using innovative ways to tackle this such as Community Alcohol Partnerships. We want this to involve residents and young people across our community and work in partnership to engage with retailers as well as educating and where necessary enforcing.”

Cllr Asma Begum, Deputy Mayor for Community Safety and Equalities said: 

“Drinking alcohol at a young age brings serious risks to children’s health and development and puts them in danger of both physical and social harm. They are far more likely to injure themselves or someone else, fail to reach their potential at school and engage in anti-social behaviour. As a Council we are committed to making a positive difference to their lives and to our local community.” 


For further information contact: Vincent Fajilagmago on 07791 637990

About Community Alcohol Partnerships

Community Alcohol Partnerships (CAP) schemes are set up to tackle underage drinking and the resulting harm to local communities. All schemes are managed and delivered locally via partnerships between local authorities, police, retailers, schools and neighbourhood groups and health providers, offering a flexible model tailored to fit the needs of each community. All schemes incorporate a mixture of education, enforcement, community engagement and the provision of diversionary activities for young people. For more information, see our website at www.communityalcoholpartnerships.co.uk

CAPs across the UK have enjoyed considerable success tackling underage drinking with a mix of education, enforcement, community engagement and the provision of diversionary activities for young people. CAP Director Kate Winstanley said: “‘I am delighted at the launch of a CAP in Poplar.  Community Alcohol Partnerships are a tried and tested way of driving down underage drinking and creating better, safer and friendlier neighbourhoods.”

In 2017, Tower Hamlets’ CAP in Mile End, and its work led by Licensing Officer Vincent Fajilagmago, received a national award for tackling underage drinking in Mile End. The Mile End CAP took several steps including checks on retailers, gathering evidence of anti-social behaviour and working with local schools and youth centres to increase alcohol awareness and organise youth activities. As a result, alcohol-fuelled anti-social behaviour by young people dropped by 62%.  

News and Blogs

A vital part of the CAP’s work has been engaging with young people, getting them involved in the campaign and building their trust. The CAP held engagement nights with local young people to discuss the issue of underage drinking and anti-social behaviour. They told us there was nothing for them to do – the community centre had no funding, access to the sports field had been cut off and there were very few facilities for young people. So far CAP has held community events, reopened access to the sports field, cleared the discussed BMX track and held street art sessions. Working hard to engage with this traditionally difficult-to-reach group has been key to our success.

Scott Adams
Cumbria Constabulary

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