THE last Friday before Christmas, dubbed "Black Friday", saw 50 people arrested across Gwent, a slight drop on last year, the police have said.

Thousands of revellers descend on city and town centres on the last Friday before Christmas making it one of the busiest shifts for emergency services across the UK .

Gwent Police said that while the majority of those who were out celebrating on Friday night did so in good spirits, there was "a small minority who caused problems for themselves and others".

Overnight a total of 50 arrests were made between 7pm on Friday and 3am Saturday morning, with officers saying this was on par with previous years (52 last year).

A total of 322 calls were made from 7pm to 3am, 72 of which were emergency 999 calls. The majority of these calls and incidents were linked to people drinking to excess.

Chief Inspector Rod Grindlay said: "From a policing point of view, Friday night was as always extremely busy.

"Officers were deployed across Gwent reminding people to think about how to get home safely and where possible nipping any problems in the bud before they escalated into more serious incidents.

"The majority of incidents we were called to had a direct link with people drinking to excess. I would reiterate our advice for people to drink responsibly when out over the festive period and to ensure they had a safe way planned for getting home.

"I would urge the public to only dial 999 in a life-threatening emergency, for all other queries please dial 101."