POLICE and partner agencies in Chester have a few tricks up their sleeves to ensure Hallowe'en and Bonfire Night celebrations don't end in the sound of sirens.
They say incidents of anti-social behaviour, youth nuisance, criminal damage and illegal fires traditionally rocket from early October onwards.
Last year, more than 1,500 complaints were received on Hallowe'en night alone, with the majority of the problems caused by teenagers.
This year, agencies are hoping to put the dampers on the trend using a combination of enforcement and education.
Leaflets which inform people of the number of calls which came in last Hallowe'en have been produced in a bid to encourage parents to do their bit and keep an eye on their teenagers.
These will be handed out anywhere and everywhere by PCs and police community support officers.
Chester city centre Inspector, Mel Williams, said: 'We are not tarring all young people with the same brush but it's a fact that last year, the majority of the complaints reported were about the behaviour of teenagers.
'There were reports of eggs and flour being thrown at windows, nuisance fires being started, fireworks let off in the street - general, anti-social, dangerous and threatening behaviour.
'This year, I encourage parents to do their bit and keep their teenagers under control.'
Letters reminding teachers and pupils of the problems at this time of year are also handed to schools in an attempt to prevent problems occurring in the first place.
Information relating to incidents reported in previous years will help officers target areas with a history of problems and powers of seizure and arrest will be used where necessary.
Insp Sue Thomas, added: 'Officers will be out on foot, in vehicles and on bikes so there will be nowhere for troublemakers to hide.'
Officers have the power to take alcohol, fireworks being used illegally and problem vehicles off the streets.
They can also issue-on-the spot fines for bad behaviour in addition to using their normal powers of arrest.
A variety of police teams will be out on the streets including special constables, Community Action Team (CAT) PCs and police community support officers, area support groups and dog hand-lers.
Organisations linked to the Chester Community Safety Part-nership, which includes Chester City Council, Cheshire County Council and the police and fire services, are funding a nuisance bonfire hotline until Monday November 13.
This enables people to leave details of any signs of unofficial, nuisance bonfires which are being built in the community by calling 01244 402477. nAn organised firework display takes place at Chester racecourse, November 4, costing £4 with concessions for children and OAPs.
Trick or treat solution > > >
Trick or treat solution
EVERYONE can get in the Hallowe'en spirit thanks to a window sign now available on the Cheshire Police website.
A two-sided colourful poster has been placed on the force's website.
One side reads 'We welcome Hallowe'en callers with children in costume' the other says 'No callers please - thank you.'
Chief Supt Tim Jackson, who heads up policing in Chester, Ellesmere Port and Vale Royal, said: 'Hopefully, this will be respected and those who would rather keep their doors closed on Hallowe'en night will not be disturbed.'
The window sign is available to download at http://www.cheshire.police.uk/ A click on a Hallowe'en graphic will take users to a design they can download and print off.
CHESHIRE FIRE and Rescue Service is working to ensure a reduction in nuisance bonfires in the run up to November 5.
The schemes are concentrating on areas where historically there have been major problems.
When a call is received to a dangerous bonfire, the situation will be assessed and, if necessary, the bonfire will be removed by contractors and, in some cases, any timber and organic material recycled.
The scheme is said to have proved successful in previous years.
The fire service points out that being called to nuisance bonfires put a strain on resources.
'We would encourage members of the community to attend organised bonfires and firework displays,' said area manager John Redmond.
Organisers are offered a series of do's and dont's to ensure the risk is kept to a minimum.
* Keep fireworks in a closed metal box.
* Follow the manufacturer's instructions.
*Light fireworks at arm's length using a safety firework lighter or fuse wick.
* Never go back to a firework once lit
* Keep a bucket of water handy.
*Site well away from houses, garages, sheds, fences, overhead cables, trees and shrubs and always away from fireworks.
* Never use flammable liquids.
* Don't burn foam-filled furniture, aerosols, tins of paint and bottles.