New scheme to tackle street drinking would not be ‘miracle cure that solved it overnight’

Boston Community Police Inspector Andy Morrice. EMN-160725-143542001
Boston Community Police Inspector Andy Morrice. EMN-160725-143542001

Support continues to be shown for a scheme to deal with alcohol-related issues in Boston.

And if successful it could be the first of its kind in Lincolnshire.

The fourth meeting of the Community Alcohol Partnership (CAP) on Thursday saw a number of organisations, including Boston Mayflower, Positive Futures, Public Health England hear about the opportunities that the nationally-recognised scheme could present.

CAPs across the country aim to bring a variety of organisations together under one ‘umbrella’.

It looks to deal with alcohol issues, particularly related to underage drinking, but also street drinking, alcohol-related litter and other issues through a mix of ‘education, enforcement, public perception, communication, diversionary tactics and further evaluation’.

There are currently 106 CAPS across the UK – all boasting some measure of success.

Alan Simpson, a CAP officer, told those attending: “It’s a minority of young people that are drinking, the larger minority are not and we want to reinforce the positive social knowledge and not focus on the negative.”

The CAP scheme sees national alcohol retailers pay into a pot, from which funding can be drawn to go towards schemes to help with one of the above methods of dealing with alcohol,

Schools in a CAP area can also get resources for free.

Previous initiatives have seen schools create DVDs on the danger of alcohol abuse and partner organisations listening to youngsters to provide youth clubs.

It could also see initiatives where partners and police work closer with responsible retailers.

During the meeting Boston Community Inspector Andy Morris said this scheme could have a knock-on effect on street drinking by educating people and being able to trace alcohol back to off-licences. But he said it would not be a ‘miracle cure that solved it overnight’.

It is hoped the CAP will be able to start in September, once the schools have returned from the summer holidays.

Previous meetings with Lincolnshire Police, Boston Borough Council and local schools were reported to have been positively received.