GLASGOW City Centre was surprisingly quiet over the festive period compared to other years according to new statistics.

The licensing forum will be presented with figures this afternoon which show that the number of people using the NiteZones in December 2019 totalled 38,762 compared to 43,482 people the previous year.

NiteZone taxi ranks operate on Friday and Saturday nights between 11 pm and 4 am and are staffed by taxi marshals who are responsible for managing the queue and assisting people into taxis to return home safely.

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Marshals use radios to seek assistance, if required, from the police and public space CCTV in the event of issues.

They also connect with partners such as the Street Pastors Service to help vulnerable people who need assistance.

The NiteZones continue to contribute to the safe exit of pub goers and night clubbers from the various locations across the city.

There are six locations at Gordon Street - opposite Glasgow Central, Sauchiehall Street - outside The Garage nightclub, Albion Street - opposite Merchant Square, Byres Road - at the entrance of Ashton Lane, West George Street and Shawlands - opposite The Shed Nightclub.

A report submitted to members of the licensing forum states: "The statistics reflect variation in the footfall but overall demonstrate a high level of use.

"Additional nights during the festive initiative were provided as a trial (three Thursday evenings at city centre ranks only) and will provide a good baseline for reviewing services for December 2020.

"The forum should also to note that December 2018 had five weekends requiring taxi Marshalls, contributing in some cases to higher footfall for 2018 figures."

The NiteZone at Shawlands continues to be funded by the Shed nightclub with support from the Shawlands Bid in 2019.

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Glasgow Street Pastors Association, based within the Saint George’s Tron Church of Scotland on Nelson Mandela Place, also help party goers get home safely.

They patrol the city and distribute safety resources such as flip flops, hats gloves and blankets in the city centre and west end each Friday and Saturday night.

Three or four dedicated pairs or small teams patrol the city centre from 10pm to 4am, assisting vulnerable people in a variety of ways.

The report continues: "The street patrol teams (each pair) are linked into Public Space CCTV and the wider communications network by the radio network for reassurance, support and operational assistance.

"Feedback from the Glasgow Street Pastors suggested that footfall over the festive period was down and that they found the city centre to be quiet for the time of year."

These findings will be discussed later this afternoon.