Many of us enjoy a night out on the town, dinner with friends or a party at a mate’s house. Inevitably all these social diversions can involve alcohol and there’s nothing wrong with letting your hair down and having some fun.

But alcohol does have a darker side and a whole raft of statistics bear this out:

  • In nearly half (45 per cent) of all violent incidents, victims believed their attackers to be under the influence of alcohol.
  • This figure rose to 58 per cent in cases of attacks where victims did not know their attacker.
  • A total of 37 per cent of domestic violence cases involve alcohol.
  • More than 25,000 deaths every year are believed to be alcohol-related.
  • Alcohol is a factor in between 60 and 70 per cent of homicides, 75 per cent of stabbings, 70 per cent of assaults, and 50 per cent of fights and domestic assaults.
  • Alcohol misuse amongst 18 to 24 year olds in the last 12 years is up at 32 per cent for men and 70 per cent for women.
  • A total of 17 million working days are lost in Britain each year due to hangovers and drink-related illness. The annual cost to employers is estimated to be £6.4 billion, whilst the cost to the National Health Service is in the region of £1.7 billion.

The message we are trying to get across to people is to be sensible in their alcohol consumption throughout the year.

You can enjoy a drink without making yourself ill, or becoming a crime or accident victim because you've had too much to drink. On no account should you ever drink and drive and put lives at risk.

For practical advice, visit the Drink Aware website and for tips on staying safe download this leaflet .