Underage drinking programme heads to Lancashire

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A programme highlighting the dangers of underage drinking is being presented to 135,000 students across Lancashire as part of an education and awareness initiative called 'Smashed'.

The series of hard-hitting lessons will feature an interactive play about a group of friends in trouble as a result of alcohol misuse, with a corresponding workshop inviting pupils to probe the cast on any of the issues brought up during the play and explore the consequences.

‘Smashed’, an alcohol education and awareness programme sponsored by Diageo and delivered by Collingwood Learning, will appear in 90 UK schools over nine weeks, and was designed to engage pupils in a different way to typical lessons.

It combines drama with interactive workshops to help young people understand the facts, causes, and consequences surrounding alcohol misuse.

Andrew Stephenson, MP for Pendle, said: “I’m glad to see that ‘Smashed’ continues to engage young people across the UK – and further afield - in discussions around alcohol misuse each year.

"We know the risks can be high, and so it’s important we continually support those who are finding new and original ways to engage young people on these important issues,” he added.

Chris Simes from Collingwood Learning, said: “The powerful theatre piece and interactive workshop have been shown to significantly increase student awareness of the risks of underage drinking. The programme supports schools in delivering vital Personal, Social and Health Education. Our goal is to break the culture of underage drinking and help young people develop responsible attitudes towards alcohol.”

Mark Baird, Head of Alcohol in Society at Diageo GB, said: “The programme’s international expansion is testament to the pivotal role it plays in tackling underage drinking on a global scale. It equips [students] with the knowledge and understanding needed to make informed decisions about drinking."

'Smashed' school dates:

- Monday 23rd January: Heysham High School from 9.40-10:40am

- Tuesday 24th January: AKS Lytham Independent School from 9-10am (Y7) and 10-11am (Y8)

- Wednesday 25th January: Ashton College from 9.40am – 10.40am and Hawkley Hall High School from 1-2pm (Y7) and 2-3pm (Y8)

- Thursday 26th January: West Craven High Tech College from 9-10am (Y8) and 10-11am (Y7), and All Saints Catholic High School from 1:40-2:40pm

- Friday 27th January: St Cuthbert's RC High School from 12:05-1:05pm and 1:45-2:45pm

- Monday 30th January: Walton Le Dale Arts College from 9-10am (Y7) and 10-11am (Y8), and Alder Grange Technology School from 1.55pm – 2.55pm

- Tuesday 31st January: Falinge Park High School from 8.40am - 9.40am and 9.40am - 10.40am, and St Wilfrid's Church of England Academy from 1.30pm – 2.20pm

- Wednesday 1st February: Lancaster Royal Grammar from 8:50-9:50am

- Thursday 2nd February: St Mary's Catholic Academy from 9.10am – 10.10am