An exploration of street drinking in Drumchapel, Scotland

Alastair J. Ross*, Derek Heim, Kirsty Flatley, John B. Davies, Megan Sudbery

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes the results of a survey undertaken to contribute to a health needs assessment of persistent street drinkers in Drumchapel, Greater Glasgow. Street drinkers, members of the public and local service providers [including agency professionals (community workers; health workers; social workers) and others (e.g. shopkeepers)] were interviewed. Street drinkers were generally male, single, unemployed and living in their own (rented) accommodation. Not being homeless, they gave volitional reasons for drinking in the street, centred on social aspects and the cost of drinking in traditional establishments/public houses. Half the group said they did not do all their drinking on the street, suggesting alternatives may be possible. Uptake of food offered to respondents being interviewed was low, and self-reported diet was poor in vitamins and unvaried. Awareness of services was low in the street drinking group, with friends/family remaining the most common source of support. Public concern was mainly with the visibility of the group and the negative impact this was perceived to have on the community; however, service providers focused on health risks associated with street drinking. Consensus on the need for some accommodation/centre for drinkers with access to services was established across all groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)314-322
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Education Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2005


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