Darlington councillor demands inquiry into underage Facebook party

The Northern Echo: PROMOTED ON FACEBOOK: Hundreds of teenagers spill on to the street after the party is shut down PROMOTED ON FACEBOOK: Hundreds of teenagers spill on to the street after the party is shut down

A SENIOR councillor is demanding answers after a teenage party held at a North- East bar and promoted on Facebook culminated in hundreds of teenagers spilling on to the street.

Cyndi Hughes, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for children and young people, said the chaos at the half-term party at The Grange, in Darlington, last Wednesday must never be repeated, and is campaigning for tighter regulations on underage parties.

Police, who confirmed no alcohol was being sold inside the venue, shut the party down at 9.30pm after being called 15 minutes earlier to deal with rowdy behaviour. Hundreds of teenagers spilled out on to the street, where scuffles broke out.

One youth was arrested and another was taken to hospital by her parents, who were concerned about the amount of alcohol she had drunk.

A spokesman for The Grange previously told The Northern Echo the party was never out of control; that staff were confident that no licensing laws had been broken and that there had been no problem with overcrowding.

The Grange said the party ended because of a disagreement between the DJ and the organiser.

Councillor Hughes is meeting police and the council’s licensing officers today, who are conducting investigations.

She said: “I have requested information as to any conditions or arrangements agreed on The Grange’s licence.

“I feel particularly strongly about the fact that if underage events are taking place at various venues in the town, that safeguarding measures are firmly in place.

“From what I have heard from the young people at the event, the door staff could have been better trained in dealing with issues faced. I am also concerned about allegations of over-crowding.

“I have asked to be briefed by the police and the licensing department following meetings and interviews with the organiser of the event and others.

“I will be campaigning for tighter conditions to be put in place on venues catering for underage events – whether they be private parties or ticket events. We certainly do not want a repeat of what happened on Wednesday.

“The vast majority of the young people at The Grange on Wednesday night acted in a law-abiding fashion.

“Equally, many parents believed their children to be at a well-run, quality event. I have requested information as to what went wrong so this sort of thing is not repeated.”

Party organiser Mark Lamb, 16, said the chaos was not his fault and said he had been made to feel a laughing stock.

No one from The Grange was available for comment.

Comments (5)

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1:45pm Mon 20 Feb 12

DM1989 says...

Alcohol WAS served, I bought a pint of carling for £2.90. And only one doorman displayed his license, surely a breach of a bars license?
Alcohol WAS served, I bought a pint of carling for £2.90. And only one doorman displayed his license, surely a breach of a bars license? DM1989
  • Score: 0

3:34pm Tue 21 Feb 12

rockandrolla says...

DM1989...your 23 so whats the problem with you being served a pint?!

Can i just say as a eye witness and frequent user of the Grange! its a very well run establishment, I have attended parties when they were catering for school leavers/ sixth formers/ they ID every body! Also in this report it leans towards blaming the Grange for the issues that took place. These kids come loaded with booze!!! the parents of the majority of the young people should have a tighter grip on their drunken, aggressive teenagers....the Grange is providing a service for young people by letting them use the establishment, its not like the town is loaded with venues for young people now is it?! also this reports states a "facebook" party.....you only need to look over the press in recent years about how parties on facebook turn into riots and become out of control, thats because of the people who attend univited! how can the venue possibly be blamed for that! they cater for a number of people stated when the party is book, if a couple of hundred people more than agreed turn up, how does that fall on the venue to police that?!?! I think from all the venues in the town the Grange provides a service every weekend with hardly any incidents and then it receives bad press like this because of hundreds of idiot teenagers!! its a joke and an insult to local business.....


Finally the parents who took their daughter to hospital cause she had to much to drink.....they need a parenting lesson, not to snipe at business'. the northern echo should know better than to slight local business....shocking article!!
DM1989...your 23 so whats the problem with you being served a pint?! Can i just say as a eye witness and frequent user of the Grange! its a very well run establishment, I have attended parties when they were catering for school leavers/ sixth formers/ they ID every body! Also in this report it leans towards blaming the Grange for the issues that took place. These kids come loaded with booze!!! the parents of the majority of the young people should have a tighter grip on their drunken, aggressive teenagers....the Grange is providing a service for young people by letting them use the establishment, its not like the town is loaded with venues for young people now is it?! also this reports states a "facebook" party.....you only need to look over the press in recent years about how parties on facebook turn into riots and become out of control, thats because of the people who attend univited! how can the venue possibly be blamed for that! they cater for a number of people stated when the party is book, if a couple of hundred people more than agreed turn up, how does that fall on the venue to police that?!?! I think from all the venues in the town the Grange provides a service every weekend with hardly any incidents and then it receives bad press like this because of hundreds of idiot teenagers!! its a joke and an insult to local business..... Finally the parents who took their daughter to hospital cause she had to much to drink.....they need a parenting lesson, not to snipe at business'. the northern echo should know better than to slight local business....shocking article!! rockandrolla
  • Score: 0

2:51pm Wed 22 Feb 12

sophie robinson says...

i would have nothing bad to say about the Grange apart from the fact people who had paid to get in who had drunk too much got sent away which is fair enough but to then let people in for free for the fact some others had been told to leave is unexceptable when there was already too many people in, this wasnt helping the numbers to go down if it wasnt for letting people in for free cos of that it may not of been closed early.. and 2 friends of mine were who had got let in for free before anyone says thats aload of ****!
i would have nothing bad to say about the Grange apart from the fact people who had paid to get in who had drunk too much got sent away which is fair enough but to then let people in for free for the fact some others had been told to leave is unexceptable when there was already too many people in, this wasnt helping the numbers to go down if it wasnt for letting people in for free cos of that it may not of been closed early.. and 2 friends of mine were who had got let in for free before anyone says thats aload of ****! sophie robinson
  • Score: 0

2:51pm Wed 22 Feb 12

sophie robinson says...

i would have nothing bad to say about the Grange apart from the fact people who had paid to get in who had drunk too much got sent away which is fair enough but to then let people in for free for the fact some others had been told to leave is unexceptable when there was already too many people in, this wasnt helping the numbers to go down if it wasnt for letting people in for free cos of that it may not of been closed early.. and 2 friends of mine were who had got let in for free before anyone says thats aload of ****!
i would have nothing bad to say about the Grange apart from the fact people who had paid to get in who had drunk too much got sent away which is fair enough but to then let people in for free for the fact some others had been told to leave is unexceptable when there was already too many people in, this wasnt helping the numbers to go down if it wasnt for letting people in for free cos of that it may not of been closed early.. and 2 friends of mine were who had got let in for free before anyone says thats aload of ****! sophie robinson
  • Score: 0

3:49pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Harry the Hitman says...

This is rediculas, the echo doesnt seem to know the facts. There were so many people turned away from the grange for getting drunk before coming to the grange and they wernt even old enought to legally drink. The organizer had way more people come than he should have had. and the party was suppose to be a 16+ party, so why was he having people sell tickets in schools to year 10's and abouve because to my workings out that means he was selling them to 14 years olds and above. The door staff are trained to handle whatever trouble they get, but if there told that only 400-600 are coming and suddenly there are about 900 turn up your going to be a bit overcome. Next generation hold there parties at the grange with 450 people and there are never any problems there, yet this guy holds his own 'wanna be better than next gen' party and it goes bad because he twisted things and left details owt to how many were actually coming, and if he sold 500-600 tickets already, why was he selling them on the door aswell.. hmmm ill leave that one with you all.
This is rediculas, the echo doesnt seem to know the facts. There were so many people turned away from the grange for getting drunk before coming to the grange and they wernt even old enought to legally drink. The organizer had way more people come than he should have had. and the party was suppose to be a 16+ party, so why was he having people sell tickets in schools to year 10's and abouve because to my workings out that means he was selling them to 14 years olds and above. The door staff are trained to handle whatever trouble they get, but if there told that only 400-600 are coming and suddenly there are about 900 turn up your going to be a bit overcome. Next generation hold there parties at the grange with 450 people and there are never any problems there, yet this guy holds his own 'wanna be better than next gen' party and it goes bad because he twisted things and left details owt to how many were actually coming, and if he sold 500-600 tickets already, why was he selling them on the door aswell.. hmmm ill leave that one with you all. Harry the Hitman
  • Score: 0

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