Jersey sees 'remarkably low' crime levels as nightclubs reopen


Levels of crime were "remarkably low" in Jersey as clubs reopened for the first time, police said.


Some of Jersey's last Covid restrictions were lifted on 26 August, allowing dancing and large gatherings to return. States of Jersey Police said the town of St Helier was back to "its lively best".

Club-goers and door staff have shared their experiences of what it was like to be out on the bank holiday weekend.


Jersey moved to the final stage of its reconnection roadmap on Thursday, prompting many revellers to make their way to clubs for the first time since the pandemic began.

Covid restrictions mean many have been shut since March last year.

The States of Jersey Police said despite a number of venues being "extremely busy...there were very low levels of related crime and disorder".


Chief Officer Robin Smith said: "St Helier was back to its lively best and islanders were enjoying themselves, with incidents remarkably low."

He said special credit should be paid to young islanders, who were "sensitive, polite and respectful".


'Off-the-walls busy'


Jason McDonald, who runs security company JMD Secure, said the bank holiday weekend had been "absolutely fantastic".

His staff covered events across the island, including a club night at The Watersplash in St Peter on Saturday.

"It was off-the-walls busy, everybody on really good form, and we had no trouble which was really unbelievable.


"I think everybody was just so appreciative of being allowed back out, to actually being allowed to go and stand at the bar and dance."

Mr McDonald, who set up his company in 2018, said the easing of restrictions had come as a huge relief for the security industry. "I lost 90% of my business in 20 minutes," he said, describing the moment a first lockdown was announced last year. "I'm just glad I came out the other side," he said.

"It's a fantastic atmosphere in Jersey - this weekend has been a huge advertisement."


Clodagh O'Brien turned 18 on the day restrictions were lifted in Jersey, meaning she could go to a club for the first time on the bank holiday weekend.


"I've always wanted to go, so I was pretty excited," she said.

"Lockdown was awful, I hated it - being stuck inside all day was not fun."

Miss O'Brien, a student at Highlands College, said despite feeling "a bit scared" about the risk of Covid, hitting the dancefloor with her best friends and boyfriend was the number one priority.


"We started queuing really early because we knew the queues would be huge," she said.

"I can dance at home but the vibe is just so different - in a club there's everybody and it's loud, and I love loud. "It was just the best - being free and being able to do what I've always wanted to do."


'Real pressure'


Simon Soar, chief executive of the Jersey Hospitality Association, said while he was "delighted" to see businesses reopen, the sector continued to face problems.

"While the industry provided exceptional service over the bank holiday weekend, we are still operating in a restricted environment. "Those restrictions may not be ones imposed on us by government. "We are continuing to face acute staffing issues and ask that islanders and visitors are sympathetic to real pressure our businesses are under."