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Highland Life / News / Northern Constabulary News / Organisers of award winning Bluelight events keep promise to roll out the initiative to Easter Ross schools

Organisers of award winning Bluelight events keep promise to roll out the initiative to Easter Ross schools

Issued: 4 Oct 2010

Organisers of a series of hugely successful and award winning youth events in Dingwall, the Black Isle and Wester Ross have delivered on a promise to roll the scheme out to youngsters in Easter Ross.

The Ross and Cromarty Bluelight Partnership took the popular Bluelight Disco event to the Ardross Community Hall on Friday 24 September.

A large number of youngsters attended the event, including students from Alness and Invergordon academies. The youngsters all got their glad rags on to attend the first event in their area.

They were transported free of charge to and from the venue by the Ross and Cromarty Bluelight Sponsor ¿ Stagecoach.

The night saw youths mixing with each other well, dancing, singing, laughing and generally having a great time. Prizes were won and a chill out area was provided which included a Nintendo Wii.

At the end of the night evaluation forms were completed and youngsters were asked to reveal how they felt the night went. All the forms returned to date show positive comments about the event.

Some of the comments said: "Just brilliant," "It was real fun," "Just fab," "Hope we get it more often," and "Loved it."

Bluelight Events is an award winning, innovative and successful Police-led initiative that aims to provide a safe environment for young people to meet and who come from different secondary schools in Ross-shire area. They attend at a specified venue and are able to enjoy themselves in an atmosphere which is free from alcohol, drugs, violence and anti-social behaviour.

The initiative provides excellent opportunities to break down any barriers between youths, communities, emergency services and other agencies. It also allows provides an opportunity to positively build on any gaps in an informal, strictly supervised, fun and relaxed setting.

Roger G Cope, Station Officer, HM Coastguard at Cromarty has long been involved in the events and he said: "Having been a partnership committee member since the inception of Bluelight in the Wester Ross area it was good to see the equally successful extension of this community supportive event within the Easter Ross area.

"The commitment and determination of Northern Constabulary committee colleagues to launch this latest event was well rewarded by the apparent enjoyment displayed by the near 100 secondary school children attending.

"That enjoyment was shared by all the volunteer supervisory staff who worked so hard to ensure that the disco met the usual high Bluelight standards, in ensuring a fun event in a safe and secure venue such as that provided by the Ardross Community Hall."

Councillor Martin Rattray said: "It was a pleasure to be involved with the recent Easter Ross Blue Light Disco in Ardross, the youngsters obviously had a great time and as a parent myself it is very reassuring to see them having so much fun in a risk free environment.

"I would like to personally thank members of the Emergency Services and the community groups who gave their time to make it such a success and I look forward to the next one."

Antony Gardner of the Highlands & Islands Fire and Rescue Service thanked Northern Constabulary for arranging the event and said: "Blue Light Discos allow youngsters to have a great night out with their friends but it also gives us the opportunity to chat with them and provide them with key safety information.

"Our focus wherever possible is on the prevention of fires and this environment is perfect for doing that."

Northern Constabulary Central Division's Community Safety Officer, Carrie Shanks, has been responsible for the lion's share of the organisation, and she said: "It was a really enjoyable night for everyone who attended from the two schools and the staff themselves.

"The success of the night is down to everyone within the partnership and in particular to the youths who to their credit showed that you don't need to take alcohol or other substances to be able to enjoy yourself and have a great time.

"To have this response is so rewarding for all the hard work the partnership puts into the night. It is very encouraging and allows for Bluelight Events to grow from strength to strength and to develop other opportunities for youths."

A dedicated web site is available for youths, parents and anyone else interested to find out more about Bluelight Events across Scotland. This includes a Northern Constabulary link to Bluelight Events with a gallery of previous events - www.bluelight.uk.net

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme