Minister to visit Cheltenham

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Minister to visit Cheltenham

Minister will visit Cheltenham to discuss night time safety

Ben Bradshaw MP, minister of state in the department of health, will be visiting Cheltenham Borough Council tomorrow to discuss the best way to deal with alcohol related violence.

The 'reducing alcohol related violence' project is an initiative that's being led by Cheltenham's community safety partnership, including Cheltenham nightsafe. The partnership works with the community, businesses and various organisations, with the aim of reducing crime and disorder in the town.

The minister, who will be accompanied by Colin Passey, deputy director for safer and stronger communities at Government Office South West, will attend a meeting with those involved in the project to hear about the work they are doing. The work includes close liaison with the bars, nightclubs and restaurants in Cheltenham to encourage them to 'police' themselves on a voluntary basis against a code of best practice. The code of practice is made up of a variety of principles, including dealing with problem situations, reducing violence and reducing the fear of crime.

The long-term objective of the project is to ensure that Cheltenham is a safe and pleasant town to visit, live or work in.

Trevor Gladding, the council's community safety and licensing team leader who is leading the initiative, will be one of those presenting the project to the minister. He said: "This is a marvellous opportunity to show the minister our total commitment and dedication towards this difficult issue. We are taking an innovative partnership approach, linking into and supporting the national alcohol harm reduction strategy. As far as I am aware nothing on this scale has been developed and delivered in the UK before."

Councillor Anne Regan, cabinet member for stronger and safer communities said: "We are delighted to have the opportunity to speak to the minister about alcohol related violence and to be able to inform him of the efforts that we are making as a council to tackle this issue."

The project is being funded by Government Office South West and supported by Gloucestershire Stronger and Safer Communities. It is believed to be the first of its type in the country.

Posted : 20/08/2007 18:40:15

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