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Doorwatch set to grow across UK

By John Harrington , 21-May-2010

Doorwatch: helping to minimise trouble at venues

Doorwatch: helping to minimise trouble at venues

More pubwatch-style groups for doorstaff are set to be formed following the creation of a National Doorwatch steering group.


Doorwatch sees supervisors keeping in contact with each other and police and bringing information on troublemakers to the attention of licensees. However, they don't decide who gets banned.


The scheme operates across parts of Devon and Cornwall, plus Coventry and Nottingham. National Doorwatch chairman Ian Fox said there's been interest from other areas including Leicester, John Street in Birmingham, Norwich, Oldham, Gateshead, Kent and Maidenhead in Berkshire.


A steering committee of volunteers has been formed to help the roll-out. It includes Pat Parkes, former manager of the Nottingham Business Improvement District (BID), who is helping in expansion of BIDs nationally.


National Pubwatch committee member Trevor Pepper, British Security Industry Association chairman Tony Clarke and Gerald Eva, who founded the original doorwatch in Tiverton, are also on board.


Fox, a director of the institute of conflict management, said another aim of National Doorwatch is to improve the image of doorstaff.


There are plans to run education programmes in schools to encourage better behaviour among pub-goers and more respect for doorstaff.


He said he was saddened by the attitude of some police forces and courts towards door supervisors.


"Door supervisors are faced with a huge amount of violence, but get no support. The police seem to think, 'you are just doorstaff, what do you expect?'


"There's a casual acceptance of violence on door supervisors. They don't have the full backing of the law. You stand in court as a door supervisor and you will be seen as the bad guy.


"We are going to speak out positively on behalf of the door-supervisor community," he said.


National Doorwatch is also trying to secure funding to help its expansion.


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