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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Cumbria police: ‘Stay safe while you start to spend again’

There is the glimmer of a festive light shining through the economic gloom – but police officers are reminding revellers to stay safe this Christmas.

Police Richard Higgin poto
Sergeant Richard Higgin

The recession appears to be finally showing signs of lifting, as people are beginning to spend once more and return to Carlisle’s bars and pubs.

This weekend is expected to signal the start of the festive party season – with workplace parties getting underway – and events building up over the next few weeks.

Christmas party bookings began at the end of November for the Thin White Duke, on Devonshire Street.

A spokeswoman said: “We are fully booked mid-week at the moment, which wasn’t happening earlier in the year.”

Another pub also noticing an upturn is The Cumberland Inn, on Botchergate.

A spokeswoman for the pub explained: “We have felt the recession through the week, but on a Saturday we are really busy.

“We have a disco on and we are now seeing people travelling in from west Cumbria and Scotland – they weren’t travelling the distance before. People are spending money again.”

There might be a positive atmosphere, but the city’s police officers are reminding people that while they want people to have fun, it cannot be at the expense of others.

Sergeant Richard Higgin said: “Please go out and enjoy yourself, but please be sensible and don’t drink to excess.

“We will be increasing patrols in the city centre, with officers wearing body cameras and potentially having evidence gatherers out as well.”

He said a meeting is planned between police and door supervisors, and taxi marshals will also be used to ensure there is no trouble on the taxi ranks on the busiest nights.

For the past two years, police have also been using a projector to project crime prevention messages on walls in the city. “We have no way of knowing what impact it has,” Sgt Higgin said. “But we have had a fall in violent crime for the last two years.”

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