A BLITZ on sales of alcohol to underage youngsters has shown Huddersfield shops are sticking to the law.
Police and West Yorkshire Trading Standards officials called at 10 Huddersfield off-licences last night to see if they would sell alcohol to underage children.
And many more shops are to be checked. Some of the off-licences had been subject to complaints from people living nearby, mainly because of young people hanging about outside.
Others were included in the visits because they had not been tested for some time.
A boy of 14 was sent in to the stores to buy alcohol. A trading standards officer posed as a shopper to watch what happened.
In all the shops the boy visited he was refused alcohol.
A trading standards spokesman said: "It is not a typical result. In West Yorkshire, and nationally, about 30% of the off- licences we target sell alcohol to underage people."
The test visits were part of a wider campaign to cut underage and binge drinking.
Police plan to carry out three more such operations, targeting most of Huddersfield's off-licences.
Insp Mark Broadhead, of Huddersfield police, said: "Alcohol plays a major part in crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour. A lot of young people have access to alcohol by buying it illegally from off-licences.
"We are ensuring that off-licences comply with the law. But we also offer guidance to resolve problems they have with young people buying alcohol."
Insp Broadhead said proof of age cards would be the next step in helping to stop underage sales of alcohol, cigarettes, fireworks and solvents.
Police and trading standards officials are also targeting pubs and establishments with public entertainment licences.
Insp Broadhead said
anyone caught selling alcohol to someone under 18 would be prosecuted and could face heavy fines.
He added: "If there were further offences we would look to revoke their licence.
"Licensees must be responsible."