THE latest phase of Scottish Borders Council’s ‘Don’t Buy It, Don’t Supply It’ campaign kicked off at the start of the Borders rugby sevens circuit last weekend.

The initiative aims to raise awareness of the issue of adults buying alcohol for children and young people in the Borders at key periods in the year, with new legislation making it an offence to simply supply alcohol for anyone under 18.

Initially launched during the festive season, the campaign now focuses on the local sevens series when underage drinking can also be an issue.

Hawick Rugby Club helped launch this phase of the scheme which will see police and partners carrying out activities during the spring circuit. This began last Sunday at Gala RFC.

The new legislation means if an adult is caught supplying or buying alcohol for an under 18, they could face a fine of up to £5,000 or up to three months in prison. 

Retailers and licensees also face serious implications if caught selling to under 18s.

Under 18s from TD1 Youth Hub and Galashiels Academy came up with the ‘Don’t Buy It, Don’t Supply It’ slogan, and provided the initial poster design which has featured across the Borders.

 It is being taken forward by the Scottish Borders Safer Communities Team, incorporating Scottish Borders Council, Police Scotland and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, with support from the Borders Alcohol and Drugs Partnership.

Councillor Watson McAteer, chairman of the Police, Fire and Rescue and safer communities board, said: “The Kings of the Sevens circuit is an iconic and hugely popular competition for the Borders.

“It brings thousands of rugby supporters to communities across the region over a number of weeks and provides numerous spin-off benefits.

“However, it can also lead to an increase in underage drinking in our communities, which is why Don’t Buy It, Don’t Supply It campaign has returned.

“This campaign was inspired by young people from the TD1 Youth Hub and Galashiels Academy who came up with the initial idea, and we hope it provides a clear message to adults about the legal, health and societal issues associated with underage drinking.

“These include the potential for a significant fine or even prison for any adult caught supplying alcohol for young people.”

John Thorburn, president of Hawick RFC added: “We are pleased to support this worthwhile campaign and look forward to ensuring our own sevens tournament on Saturday, April 21, is safe and enjoyable day for all who attend.”

To support the campaign, you can download materials from