Havering venues in crackdown on spiking

Drink toppers

Drink tops such as StopTopps will be used in Romford nightclubs in a bid to deter drink spikers - Credit: Havering Council

Venues are working to reduce the risk of drink and needle spiking as part of a borough crackdown.

Havering Council has teamed up with nightclubs, pubs and bars on the issue. 

Two venues which already have measures in place are Atik and Slug and Lettuce in South Street, Romford.  

These include clear cups with secure lids, tops for bottled drinks and ensuring staff are trained to assist with any reports of concerns. 

According to a member of Slug and Lettuce's door security, the toppers help people to keep their drinks “more secure”.  

Bag and body searches of everyone entering venues have been implemented, which include a requirement to walk through metal detector arches.

Staff are also being trained on looking out for and acting on concerns or suspicious behaviour.  

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The council’s community safety and enforcement teams will be on-hand to provide help throughout the evenings.  

This follows its announcement of a new night marshals team.

Councillor Viddy Persaud, cabinet member for public protection and safety, said: “We are proud to have a strong working partnership with our local clubs, bars, pubs and restaurants, together with police and other emergency services. 

“Between us all, we have measures in place to help people feel safe and to give them the confidence to ask for help if they need it. 

“We also need residents and those visiting our town centres to be our eyes and ears. Drink spiking and needle injections are happening without people knowing.” 

The crackdown follows concern at reports nationally of people having their drinks spiked or spiking by injection.  

Cllr Persaud urged people to tell staff at venues, the council’s enforcement team or the police if they see something and have a concern.  

“Many of these crimes are witnessed but often not reported. Please speak up to help increase your safety as well as others," she added. 

Assistant manager of Atik, Georgia King, said: “The policies we have in place are there to ensure those, including many young people who come through our doors, have an enjoyable and safe night out here in our club.”