A TWO-day swoop on under-age drinking has been hailed a success in Hartlepool.
Special Constables swiped 140 units of alcohol including lager, wine and alcopops, and handed out forms to seven people believed to be responsible for anti-social behaviour.
Six under-age teenagers were also served with drink when they carried out test purchases of sales on behalf of trading standards chiefs.
Campaigners vowed the crackdown on youth drinking, which was carried out on the weekend of February 11 and 12, would not end there.
Hartlepool Specials’ Superintendent Mike Cleasby said: “We will be working closely alongside licensees and partners in the town to improve communities and educate young people about the dangers of underage drinking.”
Volunteer police officers carried out dedicated patrols around the town and – as well as removing the booze – they handed out seven AS13 forms to people believed to be involved in anti-social behaviour.
Those people were given information as to the consequences they face if their unacceptable behaviour continues.
Special Constables also joined forces with Hartlepool Trading Standards on Friday, February 11, as part of a clampdown on underage alcohol sales.
Plain clothes and uniformed officers helped in the operation in which two 15 and 16-year-old female volunteers were served alcohol in six licensed premises in the town, which consisted of one shop and five pubs in various locations.
National Specials Weekend also saw officers talk to licensees about an alcohol watch scheme, in which they would ‘adopt-a-shop’ and support staff to prevent sales of alcohol to young people.
Special Constables are volunteers who give up their spare time to support the work of Cleveland Police in the town.
Supt Cleasby added: “National Specials Weekend has been an excellent opportunity for special constables across Hartlepool to target those responsible for selling to underage young people and to reduce incidents of alcohol-fuelled anti-social behaviour.”