New partnership aims to get Christmas revellers home safely

Written by Scott Campbell.
Published at 19:45 on 10 December 2014.
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Picture: Scott Campbell for Cumbernauld Media.
REVELLERS in Cumbernauld heading for a festive drink from now until the New Year will be aided home safely, thanks to a new safety partnership.

North Lanarkshire Council has teamed up with NHS Lanarkshire and Police Scotland to make sure that residents across North Lanarkshire get home safely.

The partnership will see taxi marshals introduced at certain North Lanarkshire town centre taxi ranks – of which Cumbernauld is one.

The scheme will run on every Friday night into every Saturday morning from now until January 3, to make sure that revellers make it home safely over the festive season.

The marshals will be located at particularly busy spots in each town centre, including the Mega Bar in Motherwell; Glebe Street, Bellshill; the Soul Suite in Wishaw; Stirling Street, Airdrie; the Basement on St Mungo's Road in Cumbernauld; and the Vulcan Bar in Coatbridge.

Operating times for the scheme are: 11.30pm to 4.00am on the nights of 12th/13th December, 19th/20th December and 26th/27th December, as well as between 12midnight and 5am on 24th and 25th December, and between 1st and 2nd January.

"With so many office parties and friends enjoying a festive night out, we want to make sure everyone has a great time and gets home safely," Councillor Jim McCabe, Chair of North Lanarkshire Partnership explained.

"The marshals will work with local taxi companies to have plenty cars available when people need them at the end of the night. We hope this pilot project will help improve community safety for everyone in our town centres."

Superintendent Craig Ritchie, Lanarkshire Division, Police Scotland, said: "This is a great opportunity for Police Scotland, to work in conjunction with both North Lanarkshire Council and NHS Lanarkshire, to keep people safe.

"The use of taxi marshals will assist people in their onward journey, providing a safer environment at various taxis ranks in North Lanarkshire. These marshals will be supplemented by my own officers and will have a direct link to the local CCTV control room, to make use of all available resources."

Dr Harpreet Kohli, Director of Public Health, NHS Lanarkshire added: "We hope this scheme helps people enjoy a healthy and happy festive period by ensuring the make it home safely and avoid any unwelcome visits to Accident and Emergency.

"If you are going to make alcohol part of your festive celebrations make sure you get the most out of your night by remembering to drink sensibly."
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