Unruly drinkers have been warned they could face a lifetime ban from a host of local pubs if they overstep the mark.
Blairgowrie-based Police Scotland community officer, PC Dave Summers, organised for stickers and posters promoting the Strathmore Pubwatch scheme to be handed to participating licensees at a recent meeting.
More than 20 licensed premises within the local area are actively involved in the Pubwatch scheme.
Those behind the venues gather regularly to discuss any issues that have occurred within, or in close proximity to, their premises – and members of the scheme can collectively decide whether the actions of individuals merit a ban from all participating premises for a minimum of one year.
Following the minimum period, anyone who has been banned must apply in writing to Strathmore Pubwatch asking to be removed from the list, although people who are banned for a second time will automatically receive a lifetime ban.
Automatic lifetime bans are also imposed on anyone found in possession of illegal drugs, or involved in the distribution of illegal drugs, and anyone who carries out an assault on licensees, members of staff in the licensed premises or police officers will also receive a lifetime ban.
The project allows members to quickly share information about current crime trends – such as counterfeit notes – as well as gaining information about licensing rules and regulations.
PC Summers said: “The Strathmore Pubwatch Scheme is an excellent way of preventing violent and troublesome individuals from entering licensed premises in our area, thus keeping customers and staff members safe.”
Iain McLean, owner of the Royal Hotel and chair of the Pubwatch committee, added: “The success of Pubwatch lies in the fact that it is a team effort combining the input of nearly all the licensees in the area along with an enthusiastic support from the police and a local councillor.
“After a few months of the initiative being introduced it was noticeable that problem incidents had reduced significantly. There still remains a small minority who have yet to understand that violent or aggressive behaviour is unacceptable and as a result will find themselves sanctioned under the principles governing the scheme.
“However there is no doubt that the awareness of Pubwatch has brought a degree of responsibility to drinking habits within the area.”
The Strathmore Pubwatch scheme, which has been up and running for several years, is supported by locally-based Police Scotland officers and local councillors.