Dorset

All-day drink laws should be axed, says police chief

Litter in Bournemouth
Image caption Bournemouth is in the top 10 local authorities for high numbers of premises with 24-hour licences

The chair of the Dorset Police Federation has called for the 24-hour drinking licensing laws to be axed.

Clive Chamberlain said the force "has to put people on for longer throughout the night-time because of clubs closing at five and six in the morning".

He also called for venues that are open until such early hours to bear the cost of policing that time period.

His comments come after the new home secretary Theresa May unveiled plans to overhaul the laws.

Mr Chamberlain told BBC Radio Solent: "We have had to put people on for longer throughout the night time because of clubs closing at five and six in the morning. We are finding people still drunk at that time wandering around and getting themselves arrested.

Night-time violence

"We always have to plan for the fact that the night-time economy has changed so when politicians look at this, I think one of the things they ought to do is to, perhaps, put the time back to one or two [in the morning] for clubs closing.

"But if they are not going to do that, what I then think they should do is ensure that those people who have the licences that go on to five or six in the morning are the people that land-up paying more for policing and also for the clean-up operation."

Licensing laws were relaxed in 2005 and government figures suggest the number of pubs, clubs and supermarkets in England and Wales with 24-hour alcohol licences has increased to a record level.

Bournemouth is in the top 10 local authorities for the high number of premises with 24-hour licences.

A Dorset Police report last year found Bournemouth town centre's night-time economy was the main contributor to levels of violent crime in the Bournemouth and Poole conurbation.

In August this year, Association of Chief Police Officers president Sir Hugh Orde, told BBC News the 24-hour drink licensing laws were a "mistake".

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