ELEVEN St Helens town centre bars have agreed to offer a free soft drink with each round in an attempt to cut the risk of drink driving.

The scheme means that the ‘designated driver’ among a group of three or more friends will be able to get a free soft drink.

Motorists have to show their driving licence and car keys to staff as part of the police-backed campaign which runs throughout December.

Kevin Ward, licensing police constable for St Helens, said: "We want to ensure that people have a great night out and can get home easily and safely afterwards.

“By giving the designated driver an incentive to keep to soft drinks, we hope it will help more people get home safely after an enjoyable night out."

Bars signed up are: Imperial, The Sefton, Duke of Cambridge, The Venue, Coco's, Bar Rifle, Breeze Bar, Dreem, V.I.P., Big Al's and The News Room.

The type of soft drink available will be at the discretion of the licensee and management of the premises.

Some premises may operate a ticket system and customers taking part may be asked to show their keys and driving licence upon entry.