BOUNCERS and the clubs they work for could be shown the door in a new clampdown.

Cleveland Police are warning bar owners to sign up their door staff for a licence from the new Security Industry Authority by a December 13 deadline - or face closure.

With just under two months to go to the deadline, only 400 of the 679 bouncers registered with Cleveland Police have completed the training needed to receive the new licence and continue working.

Insp Graham Strange, of Cleveland Police, said: "With up to 140 licensed premises in the area all regularly using door staff, unless people act now by signing up for the training and then applying for their licence, some pubs and clubs could find themselves either breaking the law or operating without a sufficient number of door supervisors.

"The police recognise and appreciate the work that is carried out by door supervisors. The new legislation creates a set of offences, which we hope we will not be required to use. Our intention is to encourage the door supervisors to become properly trained and licensed so that in future we can work together to make our town centres safe.

"Pubs and clubs using the door supervisors, who are not SIA-trained could be liable to penalties. The licence for the premises could be reviewed and ultimately the venue may be closed down."

The application process and obtaining the licence could take several weeks so he said door staff should act now.

One of the aims of the crackdown is to prevent unsuitable people manning the doors of pubs and clubs, which, with the run-up to Christmas, will soon face their busiest time of the year.

Insp Strange said: "It is difficult to estimate how many door supervisors are required, at any one time, to cover all the pubs and clubs throughout Cleveland, but we would estimate between 520 and 560 will be needed at the busiest times."

Directors of door supervisor companies, managers and supervisors of door staff must also obtain a licence from the new body. They cost £190.