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Calls to take action in Solihull over super-strength alcohol

Calls have come for Solihull to introduce a scheme which would see super-strength alcohol removed from the shelves of many local stores

Calls have come for Solihull to introduce a scheme which would see super-strength alcohol removed from the shelves of many local stores.

The authorities are to investigate the merits of the borough introducing an initiative similar to one that has seen alcohol-related crime and anti-social behaviour plummet in Ipswich.

The Suffolk town has encouraged 65 per cent of off-licenses to stop stocking products like Tennent’s Super and Carlsberg Special Brew.

At last week’s Full Council meeting, Coun Williams said he was concerned that beers and ciders over 6.5 per cent proof were being sold at rock bottom prices.

“Some of these products are available for 60p - a can of coke costs more than that,” he told councillors.

“The packaging seems to carry a clear message, ‘this is what you get to get off your face’.”

Speaking to the Solihull News, he said he wanted to see if an Ipswich-inspired campaign was feasible in Solihull.

“This scheme is voluntary so we’re not talking about a US-style prohibition. And this isn’t about judging people.

“The Ipswich scheme has been very successful and while there is no magic bullet, I think we should explore all the options available to us.”

The White Ribbon Association, a Shirley-based charity which educates people on the impact of drugs and alcohol, has backed such measures - but is keen for a definite timetable to be set..

Victoria Taylor-Smith, the organisation’s development officer, said: “Super strength alcohol is an issue all over England.

“You see young people buying this stuff for pre-loading [drinking alcohol at home before going on a night out].”

Solihull Council last week agreed to refer the matter to the Safer Solihull Partnership, who will report back on the options available.

 

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