Security marshals to patrol taxi rank in Dumfries
Stewards will patrol the main taxi rank in Dumfries over Christmas and Hogmanay in a bid to combat anti-social behaviour.
Two registered security marshals will monitor the Loreburn Street rank from midnight until 04:00 each Saturday and Sunday until 21 December.
They will also be charged with maintaining order amongst revellers on 2 and 3 January.
If the trial is successful, it may be rolled out to other local towns.
Sgt Jim McLatchie, of Police Scotland, said the stewards, who are registered with the Security Industry Authority (SIA), will ensure that members of the public are kept safe.
"Repeatedly over the festive period we get reports of anti-social behaviour, disorder and persons acting inappropriately at the taxi rank in Loreburn Street, Dumfries," he said.
The officer, who is part of the community policing unit in Dumfries and Galloway division, added: "These stewards will seek to assist in maintaining order and minimising potential anti-social behaviour.
"The stewards, who will be easily identifiable by their high-visibility vests, will have direct contact with the police through radio link."
Although the marshals will not be directly employed by the police, they will be in radio contact and monitored through CCTV.
The scheme has been introduced by Dumfries and Galloway licensing boards, Police Scotland and the Dumfries and Galloway alcohol and drug partnership.
Sgt McLatchie said: "Operators and drivers are asked to engage fully with the stewards in order to assist in making Dumfries town centre, customers and taxi drivers alike, safer over the festive season."
Police Scotland and Dumfries and Galloway Council also issued a warning about using taxis and private hire vehicles that are not properly licensed.
They should all carry a license plate and drivers should have an identification badge.
Willie Taylor, service manager licensing, said: "Dumfries and Galloway Council will investigate genuine complaints against the holders of taxi and private hire vehicles licences relating to the condition of the vehicle and against drivers for unacceptable driving or conduct."