A spiking ‘safe haven’ staffed by police in partnership with taxi marshals is set to become a weekly occurrence in Bolton.

Greater Manchester Police launched the spiking ‘safe haven’ as part of ‘Spiking Intensification Week’, which saw officers out in force in the town centre as part of a campaign to tackle drink spiking.

Bolton News report Chris Jaffray reported on the inaugural safe haven last week.

Across Greater Manchester, 10 instances of drink spiking were reported to GMP during the week, which ran from Monday, March 18 to Sunday, March 24.

Now, the safe haven will remain in place for every Friday and Saturday, rom midnight to 6am.

The haven, staffed by GMP, will work to ensure people get home safely, providing advice and drink spiking prevention packs.

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Detective Chief Inspector Andy Buckthorpe, who led the week, said; “The aim of this week was really about us having a visible presence during the night time economy, and making sure pubs, bars, clubs, and members of the public have the tools to best prevent and deal with spiking.

“Ultimately, we wish that no-one would be spiked on a night out, as everyone has a right to feel safe and do as they please without fear of being spiked.

“But, we know this does happen and are working hard with the region’s premises to combat the issue.

“Engaging with pubs, bars and communities have been key to this week’s action, and we will use the feedback and experiences of people spoken with to inform our intelligence gathering, policing plans, and where we allocate resources to in future.

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“It’s also important that people report spiking to us, even if you don’t wish for police action to be taken.

“What reporting does is again helps us educate bars and make sure we have police officers patrolling those areas, in uniform and in plain clothes, so that other people don’t end up becoming a victim of spiking.

“We know spiking is significantly underreported, and if I could land one message today, it would be for people to come forward and speak to us.”

If you have a story, I cover the whole borough of Bolton. Please get in touch at jack.fifield@newsquest.co.uk.