THE town centre community has come together in a bid to deter pub-goers from knife crime and create a safer nighttime environment.

Warrington’s town-centre businesses, police and pub owners have come together this month to take a proactive approach to crime by introducing hand-held and mobile metal detectors.

The new technology is available for every licensee in the town centre and has been funded by via the Warrington BID in its mission to promote crime prevention and a safer town centre.

Members of Warrington’s Pubwatch, a scheme that allows licensees to work together to keep members of the public safe and promote responsible drinking, believe that the devices will act as an effective deterrent and show people that violence is not accepted in Warrington.

Ian Fitzsimons, owner of the Acoustic Café and Auction Rooms, and a Warrington BID board member, has been instrumental in making the new investment happen.

He said: "Warrington has a thriving nighttime economy, with a good selection of bars and clubs for people to choose from.

"As a licensee, a resident and a member of the Warrington BID, I want our nightlife to be perceived as fun but most importantly safe, and that’s why I brought the idea to board members as I believe that this is an important investment that benefits businesses and the community."

Chief inspector Simon Meegan, of Warrington Local Policing Unit, added: "We welcome this support from the BID and Pubwatch, working in partnership to introduce these safety measures.

"The arches and wands are visible but not obstructive – so they allow people to enjoy their night out, safe in the knowledge that these preventative methods are in place.

"I’m keen to point out that the arches and wands are not being introduced because Warrington town centre has a problem with knife crime – reports of such remain very low.

"This equipment will assist in the prevention and detection of crime, and will complement other existing measures such as monitored CCTV, the town centre radio link system, premises security staff and visible policing."

The equipment is part of a wider campaign by the Warrington BID, Cheshire Police and Pubwatch to improve perceptions of Warrington’s nighttime economy.

This could held the town achieve Purple Flag status, identifying it as an area offering an entertaining, diverse, safe and enjoyable night out.