Po­lice propos­ing CCTV for venues

Evening Express (Extra Edition) - - NEWS - By Tim Sculthorpe

NIGHT­CLUBS would be re­quired to film late night rev­ellers un­der new re­quire­ments from Grampian Po­lice.

In a doc­u­ment to be dis­cussed by li­cens­ing bosses, the po­lice say a CCTV cam­era at en­trances must record “lip synched” au­dio – which would al­low con­ver­sa­tions to be mon­i­tored.

The Aberdeen City Li­cens­ing Board will con­sider the pro­posal, which also states the cam­eras must be in a prop­erly lit area.

And it rec­om­mends fur­ther cam­eras cover queu­ing ar­eas or busy parts of the premises.

The Bri­tish Pub As­so­ci­a­tion has raised fears the new re­quire­ments will be dif­fi­cult to meet.

But the Grampian Po­lice pol­icy, which only cov­ers bars and clubs open af­ter 1am, makes clear the goal is to en­sure pub­lic safety. A force spokesman said: “This is a process which is cur­rently be­ing rolled out across the Grampian force area and sim­i­lar stan­dards have al­ready been adopted in Aberdeen­shire and Mo­ray.

“In Aberdeen city, these pro­pos­als are cur­rently the sub­ject of a for­mal con­sul­ta­tion and are due to be con­sid­ered Aberdeen City Li­cens­ing Board next week.

“There­fore it would be in­ap­pro­pri­ate for Grampian Po­lice to pre-empt that process by com­ment­ing on the pro­pos­als pub­licly at this stage.”

In a letter to the board, the Scot­tish Beer and Pub As­so­ci­a­tion boss said the pol­icy on se­cu­rity cam­eras is “overly pre­scrip­tive and po­ten­tially very costly”.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Pa­trick Browne said the Grampian Po­lice pol­icy re­quire­ments “may raise fur­ther is­sues re­lat­ing to plan­ning”.

And he said: “Our legal ad­vis­ers have sug­gested there may be as­pects of the pro­posed Grampian Po­lice spec­i­fi­ca­tion which may raise is­sues of le­gal­ity in com­ply­ing with the In­for­ma­tion Com­mis­sioner’s guide­lines on these mat­ters.”

And Mr Browne con­cluded: “Our mem­bers are com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing ef­fec­tive com­pli­ance with the 2005 Act and its associated reg­u­la­tions, and to pro­mote the re­spon­si­ble sale of al­co­hol.

“They are com­mit­ted to help­ing to make Aberdeen a safe and en­joy­able place to visit and so­cialise in. How­ever, we be­lieve much of the de­tail of the pro­posed spec­i­fi­ca­tion is un­nec­es­sary.”

Mr Browne called for fresh con­sul­ta­tion with pub and club man­agers about the adop­tion of the CCTV pol­icy.

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