25th Sep, 2020

Resident claims Workman Gardens drinking ban flouters have moved to other parks

DRUNKS who are continuing to blight Workman Gardens by flouting an alcohol ban have been warned they will face on-the-spot fines as council chiefs ramp up efforts to crackdown on the notorious drinking spot.

Back in August the Observer reported on John Wayne Griffith’s claims the riverside park was becoming a ‘hostile environment’ because council chiefs and the police were not properly enforcing the Designated Public Place Order.

The order, which has been in place in Workman Gardens since 2015, allows police officers to stop someone from drinking regardless of their behaviour and issue you them with a £100 fine.

A number of residents took to the Observer’s Facebook page to back Mr Griffith’s concerns that people are flouting the no drinking ban every single day.

As a result, Wychavon District Council and West Mercia Police have stepped up their efforts to end the scourge of drinking in the park.

In the last three months police and officers from Wychavon have issued ten Fixed Penalty Notices, totalling £1,000, to people continuing to drink in the park despite the ban.

Council chiefs have also admitted at first they offered advice to those caught breaking the ban in a bid to educate people and raise awareness.

However, following concerns raised by residents in the Observer, police and Wychavon have stepped up patrols and their enforcement activity.

Wychavon is also considering the introduction of a similar order to cover all parks in Evesham to ensure the same rules apply.

If the council goes ahead with the proposals there will be a full consultation process in the New Year.

Coun Gerry O’Donnell, portfolio holder for community safety on Wychavon District Council, said: “I hope this sends a very clear message to those who continue to flout the alcohol ban in Workman Gardens that this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated and we will continue to work with the police to rigorously enforce the order.

“We will also not hesitate to introduce similar bans in our other parks if there is public concern to warrant it.”

However, speaking to the Observer, John Wayne Griffith said he believes those flouting the ban now have moved to other parks in the town.

“I am glad they acknowledge that there is a problem there and something needed to be done,” he said.

“It is still around but not at the same locations all the time.

“I have seen people saying it’s at Crown Meadow now under the bridge by the park and I have seen them still drinking at Workman Gardens.

“One person said they think that I am after glory, but all I want is for Evesham to have safe places for families to go and it takes people standing up and saying enough is enough for something to happen.”

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