Crackdown on Underage Alcohol Sales
Fixed penalty notice for anyone selling alcohol to someone under age of 18
Officers from our Trading Standards team and Southend Police continue to conduct 'test purchase operations' to ensure that shops and supermarkets are not selling alcohol to under 18's.
Recent 'test purchasing operations' have shown that shops and supermarkets are aware of the requirements of the law and are complying with them as far fewer illegal sales are being made.
If anybody is caught selling alcohol to under 18's they will be subject to an £80 fixed penalty notice or possible prosecution. Licensees who sell or allow sales to take place will always be considered for prosecution, and if sales are persistently made (three in a 3 month period of instance), then Trading Standards and the Police have the power to close the premises for the sale of alcohol for a 48 hour period. Any persistent sale or other breach of the Licensing Act may trigger a licence review which could result in a permanent ban on the sale of alcohol.
One of the ways to ensure underage sales of alcohol are not made is to the the 'Challenge 21 Scheme'. This simply means that anybody purchasing alcohol is assessed for age and anybody thought to be under 21 years of age is challenged by the seller for proof of his or her age.
Young people who want to prove their age should apply for a 'CitizenCard' which is an identity card. Application forms can be obtained free of charge from the Citizen Card website or from most supermarkets, off-licences, newsagents, post offices and convenience stores. Please refer to Useful Websites on the right of this page.
Anyone with information about off-licences selling alcohol to children are encouraged to ring the confidential answerphone maintained by the Police on 01702 423555.
Last updated: 13th September 2010