Chorley Pubwatch: It relaunches with more than 30 pubs and restaurants involved including Chorley FC
An upgraded digital radio system will help make Chorley a safe place to visit as it looks towards a recovery after lockdown
Pubwatch organisers, who sought funding for the new scheme, wanted to pre-empt any issues or difficulties that could arise as lockdown began to lift.
It was clear the old analogue radio system needed replacing with a better system.
It was felt funding was needed to help cash-hit venues, some of whom need a radio as part of their licence to trade.
Funding for the new fit-for-purpose radio system has now been provided by Chorley Council.
The funding bid was spearheaded by Steven Williams, Market Walk, Markets and Town Centre Officer/RHSS Coordinator.
He feared the consequences of not having a new system could result in anti-social or out of control behaviour at pubs and restaurants.
The venues would have no way to contact each other, or CCTV.
Steven said: "We have been working tirelessly to support the business community across all sectors throughout the pandemic and being able to support the hospitality industry in this way is fantastic.
"They will benefit from much improved communications with the central CCTV team, all other hospitality venues across the town centre as well as the Town Centre Ambassador team.
"Any issues that need to be highlighted and addressed can be done in a much more efficient way to help keep venues, staff and the general public safe while out enjoying the fantastic offer we have here in Chorley.”
Barry Graham, head doorman at Wetherspoon's Sir Henry Tate, is chairman of Chorley Pubwatch.
Barry, who works for Elite Security North West, said the Chorley Pubwatch relaunch had taken place "with the help of multi-agencies, national Pubwatch, Lancashire Police and Chorley Council".
He said: "I would like to say a big thank you to Chorley Council for providing a new link radio system meaning every venue and restaurant is now linked to the CCTV control room and to each other - making the town a great night or day out.
"If you are asked to leave from a venue then it will be then passed to the control room to monitor via the CCTV system.
"Our motto is 'barred from one, barred from all'.
"We welcome everyone back to the town centre and hope you have a great day or evening out."
Councillor Alistair Bradley, Leader of Chorley Council, said: “Throughout the pandemic we have been looking at the difficulties faced by businesses and the support they may need during their recovery from the impact of Covid-19.
“We were aware that many town centre hospitality venues had radio equipment that was in desperate need of upgrade before it became unreliable.
"These radios are not only vital to help with security, for some venues they are a licence requirement to trade, plus they can help with the additional challenge of monitoring numbers and non-compliant customers from a Covid-19 safety perspective.
“Working with Pubwatch, we are pleased to have been able to provide funding for new radios for an expanded list of venues, to enhance communications and response to potential issues, to help venues manage customer Covid compliance, therefore improving the safety of our town centre, as well as supporting businesses during this difficult time.”