Huntingdon tops district’s alcohol violence table

THERE are more than twice as many alcohol-related violent crimes per pub in Huntingdon as anywhere else in the district.

For every licensed pub or club in the town, there were 14.4 offences in 2010-11, compared to 6.5 in St Neots (east), 5.6 in Ramsey and 5.5 in St Ives.

The figures will be presented to Huntingdonshire District Council’s overview and scrutiny panel on Tuesday (November 1) as part of a report on the impact of the night-time economy and the sale of alcohol on health in Huntingdonshire.

The report concludes that Huntingdon is the priority for the Huntingdonshire Community Safety Partnership (HCSP), with St Neots also of concern.

Friday night was identified as a peak trouble period in Huntingdon, while Saturday night had a higher incident rate.

The majority of those involved in violent crime in Huntingdon were in the 18-24 age group, while there were more under-18s injured or committing violence near St Neots pubs.

The report also reveals figures from Hinchingbrooke Hospital, showing the number of assault victims treated every month.

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Since the hospital began sharing the data in February 2011, there have been 53 admissions for assault, more than half of which were on a Friday or Saturday night (29). A quarter of patients were 16 or under – including one as young as 11 years old – with the largest proportion in the 17-30 age group.

Of the 53 patients, 34 per cent were female – a figure the report says is “higher than expected” compared to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, where typically less than 25 per cent of assault victims treated are female.

The report says that since 2005, levels of alcohol-related violence and disorder have reduced year-on-year, but warns that trends can be difficult to interpret. HCSP initiatives have also proved successful in reducing the violence rates in the district’s market towns, while the Pubwatch scheme, already a success in St Neots, has been launched in Huntingdon.