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POLICE officers in the North East have criticised the small number of people whose 'unacceptable behaviour' marred this year's Echt Show festivities.

Twelve hundred people attended the after-show dance, held in a marquee on Saturday evening. While the majority of those attending enjoyed themselves peacefully, several reports of fighting and antisocial behaviour were reported towards the end of the evening, police said.

Local Area Commander, Chief Inspector Murray Main, said: "It's clear that the vast majority of individuals attending this event were there to enjoy themselves and take part in the entertainment. Organisers and volunteers have worked extremely hard for many months to put on what was a fantastic event.

"Unfortunately, and despite repeated warnings of the potential consequences of antisocial behaviour or disorder, a small minority of individuals let themselves and others down as a result of completely unacceptable alcohol-fuelled behaviour," said CI Main.

"Only through the actions of the good numbers of Police officers present were we able to prevent the situation escalating or individuals being seriously hurt."

Six individuals were charged in connection with the incidents, including a 26-year-old man from Rothienorman, a 21-year-old man from Torphins, a 20-year-old man from Inverurie and an 18-year-old man from Westhill. A 21-year-old man from Alford was also charged in connection with a minor drugs offence, while a 16-year-old girl was reported for presenting false identification.

Chief Inspector Main added: "We will continue to work with the organisers of this event and other events in the area planned for the coming months to ensure those intent on causing trouble are unable to spoil future events."