Christmas is coming – and it’s time to start thinking about the festive party season –the Secret Santa gift, party outfits….and how to avoid becoming a victim of crime this Christmas.
The City of London is a popular place for a night out or a quiet drink after work with bars, pubs and clubs looking forward to welcoming people throughout December and into the New Year. No one wants to have Christmas cancelled by ending up a victim of crime, though.
That’s why today we launch our City of London Police ‘Advent Calendar of Christmas Crime’. Online throughout the next 32 days, from Black Friday to Boxing Day, we’ll be giving out advice, tips, and reassurance on what to look out for and how you can protect yourself.
From today (Thursday 24 November), extra officers from the City of London Police will be out on patrol at peak times and in key locations until the end of December to ensure people stay safe and to help support bars and restaurants during this busy period.
The City of London Police will also be working closely with British Transport Police to keep revellers safe this Christmas. We’ll be undertaking joint patrols with BTP at key City transport hubs including Bank and Liverpool Street. Stations can be especially busy at this time of year, so we are advising travellers to keep an eye on belongings and be wary of people employing distraction techniques, particularly near ticket machines and ATMs, during the rush hour and late evenings.
Superintendent Bill Duffy from the City of London Police, leading this year’s Christmas campaign, said:
“Our message is clear –we know everyone wants to enjoy themselves this Christmas, and we want to make sure no one’s festive season gets ruined by crime. We need your help to make this happen.”
“Thieves and shoplifters operate in the City and they will be looking forward to Christmas just as much as you – don’t make things easy for them, and keep an eye on your belongings at all times when you’re out and about’
‘Know your limits, staff in bars and pubs can turn you away if they suspect you’ve had too much to drink and we will be supporting staff during this busy period.
“Christmas is a great time of year, and our goal is to ensure no one in the City remembers this one for all the wrong reasons.”
Peter Dunphy, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Licensing Committee, said:
“The City of London is a great place to wind down as well as work – and also one of the safest cities in the world for its residents, workers, businesses and visitors.
“Even though crime levels are amongst the lowest in the country, we are not complacent about tackling crime.
“We are working closely with the Square Mile’s licensed premises and the City of London Police to make sure the people living, working and visiting the City feel safe this Christmas.”
This Christmas, several licensed premises across the City of London will be using ‘alcometers’ – handheld breathalyzers a quick, easy way for bar and pub staff to establish if someone has drunk too much.
Although traditionally a relatively low-crime area, it is worth remembering that criminals operate in the City and will target people who appear distracted or vulnerable – whether that’s because they have drunk too much, are on their own, or are a tourist or visitor that doesn’t know the area.
To improve response times to incidents in the Square Mile this Christmas, we’ll be continuing a successful trial with London Ambulance Service cycle responders joining us for emergency 999 calls where possible.
Dos and Don’ts when out on the town this Christmas
- Know your limit. Know how much you can drink before you lose control.
- Look after your property. If there is one available use a cloakroom to store property safely. Thieves notice unattended belongings, keep them within sight at all times.
- Try to alternate alcoholic drinks with a non-alcoholic drink.
- Plan ahead. Know how you are going to get home safely, plan your route and mode of transport. Visit the Transport for London (TFL) website for travel updates.
- Leave your drink unattended. Watch your drinks at all times to avoid it being spiked.
- Use unlicensed taxis. It’s not worth the risk. Stay safe and book a licensed cab or get a black cab.
- End your night in the back of a police van or ambulance. When you have reached your limit STOP!