Council joins forces with bars and clubs to challenge drink spiking

Drink Spiking Awareness

Drink protectors are being distributed across bars and nightclubs in Bolton as part of anti-spiking campaign.

Bolton Council, in partnership with Greater Manchester Police and Best Bar None, have launched an anti-spiking campaign, aimed at providing advice and materials to reduce the risk of spiking.  

StopTopps and Spikeys will be sent to bars and clubs over the next few weeks. 

They make it much more difficult to spike a drink by minimising the openings of bottles and glasses.

A StopTopp is a foil lid which can be stuck on to most glasses and then punctured with a straw. The Spikey goes in the neck of a bottle, with a hole for a straw in the centre.

The tops are free of charge and can be requested at the bar when buying a drink.

The campaign is part of ongoing work to promote a safe night out in Bolton.

Working with GMP and Best Bar None, the following safety measures are already in place:    

  • Taxi marshals - operating Friday, Saturday and during any major events. Marshals have a visible presence to make sure there is an orderly queue at taxi ranks and help make sure everyone gets home safe.
  • #GetHomeSafe stickers placed in taxis to give reassurance that they are safe. This is alongside an awareness campaign of how to check a taxi is licensed in Bolton before you get it. Safeguarding training has been rolled out to all new and existing taxi drivers.
  • Ask for Angela - the campaign is aimed at reducing violence and harassment against women. It means that if you go to a participating hospitality venue, such as a bars and club, you can ask for ‘Angela’ to discreetly signal to staff that you feel unsafe or threatened and would like assistance.

Cllr Mudasir Dean, Executive Cabinet Member for Safer Communities, said:

“Drink spiking is a horrendous crime which not only affects victims physically, but it can also be detrimental to their mental health.  

“Everyone has the right to feel and stay safe while socialising.

“Personal safety is one of our priorities and the preventative work we are doing with the night-time economy should make people feel safer on a night out.

“There are steps you can take when on a night out to help keep yourself and your friends safe.

“Don’t leave your drinks unattended and don’t accept drinks offered by people you don’t know or trust.

“We work closely with our bars, clubs and partners in Bolton to make the venues as safe as possible and many of them operate the ‘Ask for Angela’ scheme.”

Dave Cottom, manager of The Swan, on Churchgate and Chair of the BBN Steering Group said:

“We want the public to know that we have a zero tolerance for drink spiking and are all working really hard to ensure that spiking does not happen in Bolton.”

Published: 4th March 2022