MORE than 20 troublemakers have been banned from town centre bars and clubs as part of a scheme to make Colchester's nighttime economy safer.

Our Colchester Business Improvement District (BID) has agreed to fund a second year following the successful introduction of the Disc banning system in 2019.

Since its introduction the Essex Police backed system has been hailed as a big success and more than 20 people have been added to the banned list for their unruly behaviour.

Paul DeAngelis is a Pub Watch committee member and helped drive the introduction of the Disc system.

He said: "We at Pub Watch and the vibrant Colchester night-time economy are over the moon to be working in conjunction with the BID team to deliver another year of our successful Disc scheme.

"The scheme has enabled us to hold troublemakers to account for their behaviour and has united the town centre venues in the banning of such individuals.

"Alongside the excellent work Essex Police and Colchester Council already do we, together with the BID have been empowered to deliver the town what it deserves - a safe and enjoyable environment for them to enjoy socialising within.”

The DISC system allows bars, pubs and clubs to work collectively to monitor behaviour in the town centre.

If troublemakers are caught reoffending they can be added to the banned list, which will mean an electronic alert, potentially including a picture of the individual, is sent out to participating venues.

These individuals can then be turned away from bars and could be removed from the town centre entirely.

In Colchester, 40 organisations are signed up to the scheme, with the system being monitored by 100 different users.

Alan Beckett, Essex Police Licensing Officer, said: "I am delighted Colchester BID has agreed to fund Disc for a further year.

"I feel the introduction of the system has allowed the police, council and venues to all work together to exclude trouble makers and hopefully make the town a safer place for all."

The BID has a dedicated night-time economy funding pot which has been used for the Disc system, dog patrols in the town centre and first aid training.

Next month, posters will be displayed in all businesses participating in the Disc system.