BARS and clubs in Liverpool city centre have received knife wands in an attempt to crackdown on people carrying weapons ahead of New Year.

Around 100 venues with late licenses based in Mathew Street and Ropewalks area, including Concert Square, Slater Street and Bold Street, have received the equipment free of charge so door staff can search customers and detect if anyone is carrying a knife.

Funded by Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson, the equipment comes in the wake of the death of 21-year-old Sam Cook after an incident at Empire Club on Seel Street in October.

The venue has since had its premises license revoked and a man has been charged with murder.

Local Policing superintendent Mark Wiggins said: “We welcome the introduction of knife wands to licensed premises in Liverpool City Centre, which supports our own tactics when we carry out regular knife crime operations.

"This is exactly the type of strong partnership work which we hope will help eradicate knife crime in Merseyside.

“Knives are dangerous and there is no place for them on the streets of Merseyside.

"Using a knife can have devastating consequences, as we have seen recently and I hope that by constantly stressing the dangers of knife crime we are getting the message across, particularly to our young people.

"I would urge people to educate themselves, speak to their children and family members and prevent the repeat of any such tragedies.

“We are grateful for the support of Liverpool City Council, the community and our partners in carrying out this work and we will continue to work towards removing knives and dangerous weapons from our streets and bringing those responsible for carrying – and using – them to justice.

“We will act on all information reported to us around knife crime. Anyone with information can call police on 101 or the Crimestoppers line anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

Statistics show that less than two percent of recorded violent incidents where someone was injured by a knife over the last year happened in bars and clubs in the city centre.