Havering Council’s licensing and trading standards team have been out across the borough checking on whether local retailers and pubs are selling age-restricted goods and alcohol to young people aged under 18.

In a recent operation officers accompanied by teenage volunteers, re-visited four traders, to see if they had followed previous advice to be compliant and adhere to the law, when it comes to selling the age-related products.

Three retailers passed this time around and one failed again. Officers will now return to that premises to let them know what the next course of action is, if further advice is not taken on board, it can lead to prosecution.

As well as local shops, the team visited pubs as part of the Challenge 25 initiative.

Challenge 25 is a scheme that encourages anyone who is over 18 but looks under 25 to carry acceptable ID when they want to buy alcohol. The premises they visit should ask for the ID if they lookj under 25.

After visiting nine pubs with a 20-year-old volunteer, they found three failed the test and didn’t ask for ID. Officers will re-visit these premises for further tests and if they fail again, will take the necessary enforcement action.

Cllr Viddy Persaud, Havering’s Cabinet Member for Public Protection and Safety, said:

“These operations give us the opportunity to check and ensure our local retailers and pubs are being compliant and not selling alcohol or age-restricted products to our young people.

“We were pleased to see that three of the businesses who had failed previously, were compliant this time and this is a great example of them taking on board the advice we gave and are working with us.

“We will take strong action against those who don’t comply and remind that this could lead to businesses being prosecuted. We also urge residents to be our eyes and ears and report any concerns they have, so we can help keep our young people keep safe.”