World Cup drinkers urged to 'be social'
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Advice for Wimbledon football revellers

As the nation is gripped by World Cup fever, the Safer Merton partnership is urging drinkers in Wimbledon to take it steady with the launch of their ‘be social’ campaign.

Working in partnership with Wimbledon pubs and clubs, Safer Merton aims to encourage responsible enjoyment of the football with their ‘be social, be sensible, be safe’ campaign launched today at Edwards in Hartfield Road.

The ‘Be social’ campaign asks everyone to enjoy the celebrations but to look after themselves, not ruin the fun for others with anti-social behaviour and to get home safely at the end of the night. The campaign was first put into place in December 2008 after funding from the Home Office.

Pubs and bars in Wimbledon will be working with Safer Merton to encourage customers to think about their journeys home by giving out wallet-sized cards including the CabWise number. Door and bar staff at some of the town's clubs and pubs will also be handing out lollipops to customers as they leave venues, a proven way to keep the noise down at the end of a night.

Chief Superintendent Dick Wolfenden, Merton Police said: "In the past we have used this campaign to successfully help people have a safe night out and also reduce alcohol related crime and incidents in Wimbledon Town Centre. Working in partnership again we hope that we will see another decline in incidents but also help everyone enjoy the World Cup together - whichever side they support.”

Councillor Edith Macauley (pictured left with Pub Watch members and Dick Wolfenden), Merton Council cabinet member for community safety, engagement and equalities said: "Everyone seems very excited about this World Cup and we hope people will enjoy coming together to cheer on their team whilst also remembering to look after themselves.

"Although Merton is one of the safest boroughs in London we know that alcohol related behaviour is an area of concern for residents and by working with our partners on campaigns such as this we hope to help address the issue and also encourage those enjoying their night out in Wimbledon to do so in a safe and responsible way.”

For more tips and advice on enjoying a safe night out go to www.merton.gov.uk/besafe.

June 11, 2010