Police pub warning ahead of World Cup

Withy Arms manager John Travill, who helped launch the Leyland PubWatch scheme
Withy Arms manager John Travill, who helped launch the Leyland PubWatch scheme
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Plastic cups and no pool cues are part of a World Cup warning issued by police which Leyland landlords are branding ‘over-kill’.

Letters have gone out to licensees recommending measures be put in place to keep the premises safe during England matches and World Cup finals being played on pubs’ screens.

But landlords in Leyland are unhappy with police, who failed to turn up to a recent meeting.

Withy Arms manager John Travill, who helped launch the town’s PubWatch scheme, said: “We had a PubWatch meeting last week but the police didn’t attend.

“People wanted to ask questions about the letter so they were disappointed that nobody from the police was there.

“We don’t have TV screens, but it seems like they’re saying there won’t be much policing, so follow these rules or don’t show the match.”

Police say the information is for advice, not an order,

Landlords are being advised to consider:

- Using plastic cups

- Using door staff (to the same ratio as would be used on a Friday or Saturday night)

- Removing ‘potential weapons’, such as pool cues and balls

- ‘Actively employing’ extra glass collectors

- Arranging for rubbish skips and bins to be emptied before each match takes place.

The letter adds: “Should a serious, violent incident occur in a premise as a result of this advice not being implemented, the full weight of the Licensing Act 2003 will be considered.”

The aim is to keep ‘incidents of crime and disorder to an absolute minimum.’

Danny Hindle, who runs the Railway pub in Leyland, which is popular for playing sports, said: “We have plastic cups anyway for Friday and Saturday nights, to keep glass breakage costs down, so we would use them on World Cup match days anyway.

“But I think it’s a big ask to ask other pubs to make a sizeable investment in plastic cups. Some licensees might say ‘we’ll make the investment, but will there be an increased police presence?’

“There is no history of trouble revolving around football matches in Leyland, so it seems a bit over-kill.

“We’re all supporting the same team after all!”

He added: “I really don’t know what the pool cue bit is all about.

“Just what do they expect to happen?”

Sergeant Tony Bushell, of Lancashire Police’s southern division licensing unit, which covers South Ribble, said: “We are asking premises to give it consideration.

“It’s just to identify risks in any premises and give them a sort of consideration to put in place.

“It’s not necessarily an order, it’s a consideration.

“It’s a generic letter that’s gone out from our headquarters.

“Obviously, if we do get potential issues at premises and these things haven’t been considered, there might be questions asked.”