Stay safe this festive season


The cold weather is definitely setting in again, but that doesn’t mean social lives have ground to a halt. However, if your destination is the pub or a club and you’re drinking alcohol, it’s important that you take extra care in the cold!

Grab a bite

Food helps slow the absorption of alcohol, stopping it going to your head too quickly. Carbs or protein such as pasta, potatoes and chicken are good to eat before or while you're out drinking.

They’ll keep you full, and the slow release of energy will help you last the distance. You’ll be more tempted to avoid that guilty 2am kebab or chips too.

It’s not a race

It takes up to an hour for your body to process each unit of alcohol. So have a break between drinks. Skinny, short, male, female... everyone copes with alcohol differently, so why try and keep up with your friends? Turning down a drink is much less embarrassing than throwing one up.

Finish your drink too quickly and you'll feel pressured to get another. Instead, make your drink (and your night) last longer or alternate an alcoholic drink with a soft drink or water. 

If you are concerned about your drinking or that of someone else One Recovery Oldham can help: 
Phone: 0161 716 3666 

Getting home 

It’s a great idea to plan your journey home – as part of their Christmas campaign, Greater Manchester Police will be out and about stopping motorists to test them for alcohol and drugs. If you’re found guilty of drink driving you could lose your licence, get a £5,000 fine, be sentenced to up to six months in prison. Don’t risk it.

  • Book a taxi before you go out and take their contact number with you. You can always rearrange the time you want to be picked up
  • Make sure you have minicab numbers in your phone (or details of the nearest taxi rank) and enough money to pay for your journey
  • Use a firm that will text you the number plate of the car that’s coming to get you. This avoids any confusion of what car to get into
  • Do not be tempted, under any circumstances, to take an unlicensed minicab. All minicabs must be pre-booked. Only licensed taxis can pull up at the kerb – any minicabs that do this are acting illegally
  • Make sure your phone is charged before you go out
  • Keep some money separate to your purse or wallet – in your coat or pocket
  • Stick with your people you know. Don’t wander off on your own at the end of the night, and wherever possible, go home together

Using public transport

If you’re travelling home by public transport, find out the times of the buses/trains so you’re not waiting about too long at the station/bus stop or miss the last one altogether.

Stay alert and don’t fall asleep – this will be easier if you’re not drunk

Plan your journey

Walk away from trouble

Don’t be drawn into problems or arguments; all it will do is ruin your fun. The smart thing to do is just walk away and continue with your great night out. 

If you feel like you’re being drawn into a difficult situation walk away and speak to the staff or doormen.

If you feel like you are in danger, go somewhere you feel safe, where there are lots of people around.  If you still don’t feel safe or you run into trouble, call the police. 

Drugs and New Psychoactive Substances (formerly Legal Highs)

At this time of year, many people will be celebrating Christmas and some may be more likely to take drugs or New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) putting their lives at risk. 

The law regarding NPSs has changed and it is now an offence to sell or give NPS to someone (even for free)

Don’t feel under pressure from friends to take drugs, you can never be sure what is in them or what effect it might have on you or your friends.  

If you are concerned about your drinking or drug taking or that of someone else, One Recovery Oldham can help: 

Phone: 0161 716 3666 

Sexual Health

This party season, don't find yourself having to deal with a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or an unplanned pregnancy. 

Help is at hand at our walk-in clinics, book an appointment online 24/7 or speak to us on 0300 303 8565. Our phone line is open 24 hours a day Monday to Friday.

Make sure you're prepared – have enough of your contraception method to last the festive period. Your local sexual health hub is there if you need it, Sexual Health Hub website and if you need support when this is closed visit which also has tips for a safer party season.