Issued By
West Yorkshire Trading
Standards Service



On 25th June, West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service is launching the next phase of the Proof of Age Partnership, which has been running since November 2001 in the East Leeds area.  The aim of the Partnership is to reduce the number of opportunities that youngsters have of buying age restricted products such as alcohol and cigarettes.

The formal evaluation is now complete and the West Yorkshire Proof of Age Partnership has proved itself to be an unqualified success.  Since its introduction, West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service has received no complaints relating to underage sales in the pilot area.

In addition, calls to West Yorkshire Police relating to Youth Nuisance and Anti Social Behaviour have dropped from 4600 last October to 2200 in January 2002. Whilst the Partnership cannot claim full credit for this reduction, it is clear that the opportunities youngsters have to purchase alcohol have been significantly reduced, thereby cutting the number of instances of anti-social behaviour and youth nuisance so very often associated with alcohol consumption.

This overwhelming success has meant that the Partnership can begin its roll out programme, initially in North and North East Leeds.  The aim is to spread the Partnership across the rest of Leeds and ultimately the rest of West Yorkshire, funding permitting.

Chairman of West Yorkshire Joint Services, Councillor Graham Clarke said, “ It is very encouraging to see that the number of complaints about the sale of age restricted products has fallen so dramatically in the pilot area.  The scheme eliminates any uncertainty for retailers about the age of youngsters and consequently means that there is no longer any reason for illegal sales to be made in the future.”

Martin Wood, Chief Officer of West Yorkshire Joint Services said, “ The roll out of the Partnership highlights the success of the scheme and I look forward to seeing the Proof of Age Partnership continuing with the same level of success across the whole of West Yorkshire in the near future.”  

Roger Elliott, from Safeway, a major supporter of the Proof of Age Partnership said        “Safeway have been very pleased to be involved with West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service in their Proof of Age scheme.  We hope that our involvement has been of benefit both to the success of the initiative and also to the community as a whole”

Details of the Partnership are available on our website 


For further information contact


Graham Hebblethwaite: Divisional Manager/General Media Contact 0113 2898218

Paul Cooper: Divisional Manager 0113 2898240

Carol Hallett: Education and Promotions Officer: 0113 3836407


Notes to Editors

The launch of this next phase of the West Yorkshire Proof of Age Partnership takes place at 11 am on Tuesday 25th June 2002 at Safeway Stores, Roundhay Road, Leeds. Councillor Mike Fox (Roundhay) will be in attendance, as will pupils and teachers from the schools involved.  Photographers are welcome

The schools involved in this roll out include Abbey Grange CE High School, Allerton Grange High School, Allerton High School, Boston Spa Comprehensive, Braim Wood High School for Boys, Cardinal Heenan RC High School, Mount St Marys RC High School, Primrose High and Wetherby High School.