Wednesday, 6 November 2013

CHESTERFIELD STREET PASTOR HALLOWEEN PATROL INTERVIEWED BY PEAK FM

Peak FM Feature:

Police patrol Halloween night out in Chesterfield

Streaking, fighting and public urination were on the cards for Derbyshire police as they patrolled the streets of Chesterfield town centre last night.
Heading out at 10pm the streets were slowly filling with people covered with blood, bandages and black eyes before the night's begun.

Sgt Lee Welsby told me that Halloween and fancy dress pose problems for the police on nights like these. "You can't tell if someone's hurt or it's just part of their costume. All the make up, wigs and costumes makes it a lot harder for the doormen to work out if people are under-age or using someone else's I.D. to try and get into the bars and clubs."
Sgt Welsby's role last night was the night time economy manager for Chesterfield town centre. Over the evening he liaised with the door staff, people manning the CCTV, officers spread throughout the town, street pastors and ambulance service.

"Going out in plain clothes is important as well as having a highly visible presence on the streets. You become invisible and tend to see things you might not have done if you were in uniform."
At the start of the night the team of officers discussed possible problems for the town; drunkenness, anti-social behaviour, public urination, under-age drinking and traffic offences.

"We close the road leading down a bar strip in the town centre to try and stop people getting run over. People walk straight out the bars to the taxi or food shops and they don't look when they're crossing the road. I'm really surprised more people aren't hit by cars in Chesterfield, when they've had a few to drink."

Intoxicated people take up a lot of time and resources for the emergency services. Each time the ambulance is called out it costs in the region of £250 and then you have the equipment and time spent by the paramedics and hospital staff.


For party goers who don't need to go to hospital but have left themselves vulnerable, Street Pastors assist the police on busy nights out.
The Christian organisation is called by police to help people by offering water, blankets and organising travel home.
John is a retired police officer and was part of a team of three street pastors out on Halloween. The team will be out from 10pm until around 4am on the main nights out (weekends and holidays).
"We try to help by giving out water, doing first aid and giving out flip flops to young ladies who can't walk in their heels any more. We also give out lollipops, you would be amazed how quickly people calm down when you give them a lolly.
Have a good time but don't get too drunk, you can leave yourself very vulnerable to getting hurt; either because you've fallen down or because someone else can hurt you."


Street Pastors John and Sophie from Chesterfield


STATS FOR THE EVENING:
1 person arrested for being abusive in the street under a public order offence.
1 person arrested for being naked in the street under a public order offence.
1 male absent without leave from the army
1 failed to stop after reversing into two taxis, drove off and hit a third car.
2 people arrested for fighting
2 people arrested for being drunk and disorderly
4 people ordered to leave the town centre- section 27
4 people issue with a £60 fine for public urination- shop doorways and churchyard