Welcome to Community Alcohol Partnerships

Hindley was chosen for a CAP because it had the highest number of incidents of “youths causing annoyance where alcohol was a factor” in Wigan. There were also historical and on-going issues with proxy purchase in specific “hotspot” areas. Hindley Green had fewer issues, but the proximity of the two made it essential to include licensed premises in both areas, in order that problems were not displaced.

Date established: July 2013

Key partners

Wigan Council Trading Standards and Licensing; Safer Environments (Anti-social Behaviour); Restorative Solutions and Voice and Engagement teams; Greater Manchester Police; Public Health; local high schools; 27 RASG members – lead retailer for the area being ASDA

 Actions taken

• Joint Proxy operations and Staysafe operations to identify and deal with youths in possession of alcohol/youths buying or asking others to buy
alcohol/youths under the influence of alcohol
• Positive relationships built with alcohol retailers, which increased their confidence to report issues such as suspected proxy purchase. This enabled more robust follow up action by enforcement agencies to act as a deterrent to those buying
• Training provided to alcohol retailers by Trading Standards & Licensing in conjunction with lead retailer ASDA, in order to give more confidence in challenging under age sales and ultimately to become members of Wigan’s Responsible Retailer Award Scheme
• Education workshops carried out in three local high schools to encourage not drinking as a positive choice
• The “Winter Warmer” project involved a series of workshops held in a local church by Youth Workers and Restorative Solutions, covering the topics of Anti-social Behaviour, Drugs and Alcohol, Personal Safety and Relationships, whilst also providing some positive activities
• A number of community groups including a local alcohol recovery group, are presently working together to obtain management of a derelict piece of land, in order to create and operate a community allotment/garden. The vision is for those groups and young people to work together, increasing respect and appreciation between generations, whilst promoting the social and environmental well-being of the area

Impact of CAP

Survey data showed that:
• 66% of retailers felt that the CAP has helped to reduce attempts to buy alcohol by under 18s and more than half felt that it has helped to reduce proxy purchasing
• More than half of retailers felt that the relationship with the Police and Trading Standards had improved since the introduction of the CAP
• The number of retailers achieving the Responsible Retailer Award increased by 46%
• Residents who saw young people drinking alcohol in the local area every day or every few days fell from 20% to 11%
An independent evaluation by Alcohol Concern found that the Hindley and Hindley Green CAP has demonstrated reasonable evidence of success in achieving four of its six targeted outcomes, with linked benefits to the community providing evidence for rolling out the approach in other parts of the North West. The evaluation observed some problems with the design and execution of the project focused almost entirely on data collection and highlighted the importance of building in better evaluation from the start. This finding will inform future evaluation of CAPs.
The Reading Community Alcohol Partnership is clearly very active around the town and it’s good to hear that its multi-agency approach is aiming to tackle underage drinking through direct engagement with young people, enforcing the law with regard to underage consumption and proxy purchasing, and maintaining a constructive dialogue with businesses and retailers.

Rob Wilson MP
Reading East