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Alcoholic Drinks: Misuse

Volume 476: debated on Wednesday 21 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department further to the Prime Minister's comments on tackling binge drinking at her press conference on 28 January, what powers are available to local authorities to charge establishments selling alcohol to pay for additional policing. (183781)

[holding answer 1 February 2008]: Sections 15 to 20 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 give local authorities the power to designate, with the consent of the police, a locality as an alcohol disorder zone (ADZ) where there is a problem with alcohol-related nuisance and disorder. Local authorities will have the power to impose charges on holders of premises licences allowing the sale by retail of alcohol and on holders of club premises certificates allowing the supply of alcohol to members and their guests.

The ADZ regulations have passed through both Houses of Parliament and are expected to be commenced in June 2008. A copy of the updated guidance can be found on the Home Office website using the link below:

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what figures her Department holds on levels of binge drinking among people aged (a) under 16, (b) 16 to 24 and (c) over 24 years. (206021)

There is no universally agreed definition of binge drinking, but the term has generally been used to describe a pattern of drinking that involves drinking alcohol to excess over a short period of time.

The Home Office published a study in 2006 (Underage drinking: findings from the 2004 Offending, Crime and Justice Survey Matthews et al (2006) Home Office Findings 277) to explore the prevalence and nature of underage drinking and the relationship between alcohol consumption and offending among young people (10 to 17-years-old). The report can be found here:

The Home Office also published a study in 2005 (Findings from the 2003 Offending, Crime and Justice Survey: alcohol related crime and disorder, Matthews, S. and Richardson, A. (2005) Home Office Findings 261) which looked at the relationship between patterns of alcohol consumption and offending by 18 to 24-year-olds. This study does include some information on alcohol consumption relating to older age groups 25 to 25 and 36 to 65-years-old. The report can be found here: