Booze ban extension in blitz on drunks - The Evesham Observer

Booze ban extension in blitz on drunks

Evesham Editorial 23rd Mar, 2018   0

A CLAMPDOWN on anti-social behaviour and drinking in Workman Gardens could be extended to cover all of Evesham’s riverside under proposals to be considered by council chiefs, the Observer can reveal.

Members of Wychavon District Council’s Executive Board will meet on Wednesday to discuss a new three-year Public Spaces Protection Order or PSPO for all the open spaces along the river in Workman Gardens, Waterside Gardens, Abbey Park, Crown Meadow, Viaduct Meadow and Corporation Meadow.

Councillors will be asked to back a consultation for the new PSPO which, if introduced, would replace the exisiting booze ban which has been in place since April 2015 following endless complaints of bad behaviour blighting the area.

Issues such as damage to boats, excessive noise, urinating and defecating in the shrub areas, jumping in the River Avon when drunk and requiring rescue are examples of some of the more serious incidents which have occurred.

The order is due to expire next month and in a report to council chiefs, officers said while it had helped to minimise the problem drinking and bad behaviour in Workman Gardens it had seen those responsible move to Abbey Park on the other side of the river.

“They have caused problems there by becoming so drunk they lay inert on the grass near the children’s play area to the distress of other park users and caused the emergency services to attend. Drinkers often dominate the use of seats by the War Memorial or the Lily Pool,” the report added.

Officers have also warned councillors the two Green Flags currently awarded to Workman Gardens and Abbey Park may be in jeopardy if the council fails to take action to tackle the problem.

If introduced, the PSPO will enable the police and Wychavon’s Community Wardens to confiscate alcohol and issue fixed penalty notices to anyone found breaching the policy.

The proposed order will not affect events for which licences for alcohol are granted and could be renewed for a further three years when it expires in 2021.

Coun Emma Stokes, executive board member for the Environment, said: “We are very proud of our award-winning parks but there is a small minority that are determined to spoil the enjoyment of them for everyone else by acting anti-socially.

“If agreement is given to go out to consultation on extending the PSPO then it is important the public get involved and tell us whether or not they support our efforts to clampdown on this totally unacceptable behaviour.”

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