EVESHAM Street Pastors returned to the town last weekend to support those out enjoying the nightlife.

The group is part of a national organisation meeting in around 270 towns in the UK and a growing number abroad.

In Evesham the group meets every weekend on either a Friday or Saturday night, patrolling the town from about 10pm and covers the central area of Evesham.

John Darby, co-ordinator, said: “We work closely with the police, Wychavon’s CCTV team, door stewards and the clubs and pubs.

“Our aim is to support those out enjoying the nightlife of the town, doing our best to ensure they are safe. We stay out for as long as the clubs are busy, often until around 3am. Evesham is a busy and popular place at night there are often more than 500 people about in the early hours of the morning.”

“The weather was kind (last weekend), there was a great atmosphere in the town and those people who were out and about were pleased to see us.

“This past year has been difficult for everyone and apart from a short period during the summer there has been no need for our presence.

“Giving out flip-flops and water and lollies is what we are known for but being a ‘listening ear’ is also an important part of what we do. As part of our training, we learn how and where to direct people who, for a wide variety of reasons, need help and direction.”

The group currently has 17 street pastors, three in training and 17 prayer partners.

“In the near future we hope to be back patrolling every weekend on either a Friday or Saturday night between 10.00pm and 3.00am.,” said John. “We are a Christian charity, everyone involved are volunteers, we are well supported by the churches in Evesham, together with the local Police and Councils.”