Anti-social behaviour blighting parts of Colburn is set to be addressed by the introduction of an order banning groups of youths congregating in the area.
The Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) will give police and council officers the power to move groups on, fine them for unruly behavior – and prevent certain activities.
Members of Richmondshire District Council’s Corporate Board are expected to give the go ahead to introduce the PSPO when they meet next week (January 16).
In the last nine months there have been more than 200 reports of youths behaving in an anti-social way around the Broadway shops area – which has also affected Colburn Library, residents of local flats and the Colburn Business Park. It has included underage drinking, verbal and racial abuse, intimidation of younger and older people, abusive language, aggressive behavior and large groups of youths congregating. Eggs and other objects have also been thrown at – and into – Broadway businesses and shops.
Multi agency problem solving groups have been working in the area for some time and local people have been asked for their views on the issues – and the proposed PSPO is thought to be the best way forward,” said Council Leader, Councillor Yvonne Peacock.
“We do not take introducing such a radical measure lightly – but we must do something to protect the local community and the quality of their life. By imposing conditions through the order we can give the police and our council officers more powers to disperse the troublemakers – and impose fines when the order is breached.”
The two year order – which will cover the Broadway area, Colburn Business Park, the Chase and Albemarle – will ban:
- Behaviour that causes – or could cause – harassment, annoyance, distress or harm
- Threatening or abusive people
- Congregation in groups of three or more youths under the age of 17 behaving anti socially
- Continued consumption of alcohol when asked to stop by an authorised officer
- Throwing of objects likely to cause damage, injury or nuisance to people, animals or buildings
“The order will be for an initial two years and can be amended at any time,” she added.
“It is the first time we have used these measures in Richmondshire but we cannot allow the problems in this area to go on any longer. We hope it will improve the quality of life for our residents, businesses and visitors.”
The PSPO will be made under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 which gives local authorities the power to prohibit certain activities – or require them to be carried out in a certain way – within a designated area. That can include public highways and footpaths, parks and open spaces and pedestrianised areas. Once an order is made it becomes a criminal offence to do anything within the order – offences can be dealt with through the courts or with fixed on the spot fines.
January 8, 2018