Christmas revellers who get into a spot of bother will be able to take advantage of a Help Zone in Exeter city centre next Friday (20 December). The Help Zone aims to help those who find themselves in difficulties following the excesses of Christmas parties, be it from injury, drinking too much alcohol or being a victim of violence. Situated at The Mint Methodist Church in Fore Street, the Help Zone is being trialled on 'Builder's Friday' - traditionally the busiest night for Christmas party goers. The initiative brings together paramedics, police and Exeter City Council staff in one central place to help those who may need it. The Help Zone is being rolled out by Exeter Community Safety Partnership's Alcohol, Violence & Night-time Economy Group, bringing together the work of Exeter City Council, the Police, South West Ambulances and Exeter Street Pastors. Cllr Keith Owen, Lead Councillor for Environment, Health and Wellbeing, said: "This is about giving people a central place to go in the city centre if they run into any problems. Paramedics will be able to treat minor injuries on the spot, taking the burden away from accident and emergency departments and allowing police to deal with incidents and take statements without having to travel out of the city centre. "We're happy to be involved in this worthwhile initiative and feel that this is an important time for the City Council to be assisting the police and frontline NHS staff. The Help Zone is something that has worked well in places like Torquay and Nottingham, so we'll be interested to see how it is received in Exeter." Police Supt. Chris Eastwood, said: âItâs satisfying to know that people have a safe place to go to in the city if they get into any problems over the festive season. We want people to have fun and enjoy a trouble free time, but we urge them to be aware of their limits and stop drinking before any trouble brews.
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