Stay safe in the city centre this Christmas

18 Dec 2015 09:00 AM

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Police in Newcastle city centre are stepping up patrols to keep people safe in the run up to Christmas.

In the coming days hundreds of thousands of people will be coming into Newcastle, both day and night, to enjoy everything that the city centre has to offer.

Shops, cafes and restaurants will all be busier than usual during the festive period and officers from the city centre Neighbourhood Policing Team will be carrying out extra patrols in the busiest areas all the way up to Christmas.

Although there will be a more noticeable policing presence in the next few weeks police are still reminding people coming into the city to keep themselves and their belongings safe.

Neighbourhood Inspector Darren Adams said: "Newcastle city centre is a great place to come and spend time in the run up to Christmas. It has great shopping, night life and entertainment and there is a real buzz about the city around Christmas time.

"It's also a very safe place, with relatively low levels of crime and disorder, however this increase in visitor numbers does attract certain types of criminals, especially opportunistic ones, who operate in large crowds and busy areas.

"They are the ones who are looking for bags left unattended, coats left on seats, zips and pockets left wide open and any easy chances they can get to steal things like purses, wallets and mobile phones.

"There is no worse feeling than having something stolen from you and so to help stop thieves I'd ask that you look after your valuables. Think a little about where you keep your belongings and just zip bags up, keep them close and don't leave any easy opportunities for thieves to strike."

Police are expecting the bars and pubs to be busier the closer we get to Christmas and officers will be working with bar staff and security to make sure party goers are kept safe.

Inspector Adams added: "Earlier this month the force launched its personal safety campaign 'Keys, Money, Phone, Plans to Get Home?' with advice on how to stay safer during a night out.

"Anyone coming into the city for a night out should make plans in advance to get home safely - pre-book a taxi or make sure they know how they are getting home. Everyone also needs to look out for their friends and arrange a safe meeting place in case you get separated on a night out.

"Other little tips that could really help are things like storing an ICE (In Case of Emergency) number in their phone and stashing some cash in case you lose your purse or wallet and need some in an emergency.

"We want everyone coming into the city to have an enjoyable time and to get home safely afterwards, look after yourself and your friends and stay safe this Christmas."