The Community Alcohol Partnerships (CAPs) scheme will be launched in around 30 new areas in the next 12 months, taking the total number of UK CAPs to over 130 by the end of the year.

The CAPs scheme was launched in 2007 to promote responsible retailing. Retailer engagement involves meeting with local police, schools and other retailers and working together to tackle proxy purchasing, start diversionary activities for young people and use confiscation powers and other means to tackle underage drinking.

James Lowman, ACS chief executive, said: “Community Alcohol Partnerships are an effective way for retailers to engage locally to tackle the issues of proxy purchasing, underage drinking and other alcohol abuse. CAPs makes a material difference to local shops and the places they trade. By bringing the police and council together with retailers, CAPs make a lasting change, cutting youth drinking and reducing anti-social behaviour that can blight many towns and neighbourhoods. We encourage retailers to get involved in a scheme in their area.”

Kate Winstanley, CAP national director, said: “Convenience stores are an important part of CAPs because they are right in the communities that can be affected by underage drinking and anti-social behaviour, often bearing the brunt of these problems. CAPs benefit local shops, young people and the whole community, and we are delighted to be bringing these benefits to 30 more places over the coming year.”

The very first CAP scheme was piloted in Cambridgeshire where the scheme was a resounding success, reducing anti-social behaviour by 45% while alcohol-related litter counts also dropped significantly.