About time: Clubbers bussed to nightclub door in bid to curb anti-social behaviour

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Party-goers attending a Cookstown nightclub are now being bussed right to the door, as police attempt to rein in anti-social behaviour.

Over the past number of months, the Mail has reported on various incidents in the town after revellers leave TIME on James Street.

These have included everything from fighting and brawls, to people toileting in the street.

Indeed, just last week, there were reports of a man defecating behind an address at Loy Street at around 1am.

Back in May this year, the Mail also reported how the PSNI had to deploy batons and CS spray to get a brawl outside the nightclub under control.

Meanwhile, as a result of the ongoing anti-social behaviour resulting from night-time revellers in the area, one family left their home on Loy Street after being continually woken up by the noise.

At the time, the landlord of the property, Shane Beckett, said something had to be done and that it was “all about crowd control”.

He told the Mail in May: “The buses must drop off at the door of the nightclub... then go and park in the Burnavon and then at kicking out time, they need to queue up in the double lanes and pick up from the door… They need to be held back from the top of Loy Hill and away from residents’ homes (and) the nightclub needs to keep its doors open to allow people to use the toilets, until the last bus has gone.”

On Monday night (August 8), it appeared the buses were finally doing just that as people going to the club were taken right to the door.

Usually, they are dropped off further along the street and have to walk the remaining distance.

Police have also issued a number of statements recently in relation to anti-social behaviour in Cookstown, having undertaken a month-long campaign to tackle it.

Supt Mike Baird, District Commander for Mid Ulster, said: “Whilst everyday policing continues, I think this is an opportune time to shine a light on the work we are doing, along with partner organisations, on tackling and preventing anti-social behaviour in our communities.”

Inspector Daniel Walsh added: “Police are aware of the concerns of local residents when it comes to anti-social behaviour in the Cookstown area during night time hours.

“Police have contributed to a multi-agency approach alongside the local council, councillors and PCSP members to address these issues and have consulted with licenced premised and bus companies.

“An agreement has been made for bus companies to drop off their passengers at specific points so that any disruption to residents can be kept to a minimum. This also gives the PSNI optimum opportunity to keep everyone in the area as safe as they can be.”

After re-issuing guidance on the illegality of drinking on buses, police also stopped one carrying revellers to Cookstown on Monday night to check IDs, for underage drinking and also alcohol.