ANTISOCIAL behaviour across the Borders is on the slide, according to the latest figures from Police Scotland.

Statistics show there were 131 incidents reported between April and June – a five per cent decrease on the same period last year.

And top brass for the region are thankful to the Street Pastor patrols for helping curb late-night crime.

Chief inspector Andy McLean told the recent meeting of the Police, Fire and Rescue and Safer Communities Board: “Antisocial behaviour seems to be a seasonal thing – it goes up and down.

“While it is good to see the figures fall, they can be difficult to interpret – for example, cases where people have made comments on the internet are now included in the statistics.

“The 131 incidents are not all the stereotypical things like shouting in the street or having a dispute with your neighbour.

“However, I have to say the Street Pastors have been a massive bonus for us.

“They are out during the night which helps us a lot. If someone has too much to drink, we would normally have to have officers to look after them or get an ambulance for them.

“But the Street Pastors do this, which is great, as it allows us to deal with other incidents.”

Officers say they are also clamping down on antisocial behaviour by educating people about alcohol and drugs misuse.

Chief Inspector McLean said: “Lots of work is being done for alcohol awareness. For example many pubs in the area have signed up to the Best Bar None scheme - which is a commitment to providing a safe environment to the public.

“We have also spoken to the organisers of the big events such as the Melrose Sevens and Common Ridings beforehand, so they are well briefed in terms of what is expected of them.

“Officers are also out there [on the streets] trying to deter people from drinking and taking drugs.”

Kelso and District councillor Euan Robson (Lib Dem) asked what the force is doing to stop adults buying alcohol on behalf of youngsters.

And preventing drunken offending by teenagers.

Ch Insp McLean responded: “There are some irresponsible adults who say they will go into the shop while the kids stand outside.

“We do regular licensing checks and carry out ‘proxy checks’ where we stop the adult. However these are very difficult, because it could just be an adult buying drink for their own consumption.

“How far do you follow them, to see if they are giving it to a child? If we find out they have given alcohol to kids, we can, and have in the past, charged them.

“If we find kids with alcohol, we do speak to them to ask where they got it from – but that is very much dependent on them telling us who gave it to them.”