Knife arches installed at Wolverhampton nightclub to weed out weapons
A nightclub has installed airport-style security scanners in a bid to keep its clubbers safe amid the recent rise in knife crime.
Banjul, on Queen Street in Wolverhampton, is using a knife arch to scan people as they enter the venue to check for drugs, knives and other dangerous weapons.
The move comes after The Outback, opposite Banjul, had its licence temporarily suspended following a stabbing outside the club in January where a 22-year-old man was stabbed in the back.
Kyle Brown, the manager of Banjul, said: “We have introduced these security measures as a way to ensure that no weapons or narcotics are able to get in to the venue, and for this reason we have had no incidents take place to date within the club – which opened last year.”
If they pass through the scanner with no issues, they will be patted down and their bags searched. A final search involving a second pat down takes place before customers are allowed in.
In the last 12 months, there have been numerous deaths linked to knife crime in the city including 15-year-old Keelan Wilson, who was fatally stabbed in the Merry Hill area last May.
Knife crime across the wider West Midlands has been described as an “epidemic” by campaigners, with the number of offences having increased by nearly three quarters in four years.
This past weekend, three men were stabbed outside a nightclub in Birmingham.
This follows the fatal stabbings of two teenagers in the city last month.
Senior Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner Ashley Bertie said: “Whilst there is a need to maintain a friendly and welcoming atmosphere in clubs – and I don’t believe that there is any intention to create a fortress mentality – we must recognise that there has been a rise in violent crime in the West Midlands and across the country.
“It is incumbent on the police to work in tandem with night-time establishments to ensure that everything is being done to keep people safe.”
Pat McFadden, the MP for Wolverhampton South East, added: “It is sad that it has come to these measures but it is understandable as the city and the country face up to the frightening rise in knife crime.”