A Public Spaces Protection order (PSPO) for alcohol control across the whole isle – with the exception of Monkton and Acol – has come into force.
The PSPO means there is a restriction on carrying and consuming alcohol which is deemed to be causing, or may cause, anti social behaviour, when asked not to do so by an authorised officer.
It replaces the Designated Public Places Order relating to alcohol control, which expired in October, due to the introduction of PSPOs.
Cabinet members at TDC approved the order on 16 November and it became active on December 19.
Cllr Fairbrass, Cabinet member for Community Safety and Environmental Services, said:”This PSPO is designed to give council officers greater ability to tackle alcohol related anti-social behaviour, in the interests of the wider community, residents, local businesses and visitors to the area.”
“It will help deter street drinking and anti-social behaviour by reinforcing the council’s zero tolerance approach in this respect and in turn encourage positive behaviour to improve our local environment.”
The order lists offences as:
“All persons are prohibited from consuming alcohol and must dispose of any vessel believed to contain alcohol, when asked to do so by an authorised person, when it is believed that they are either committing or likely to commit Anti-Social Behaviour in a public place.
An authorised person can require any person:
- a) To not consume alcohol or anything the authorised person reasonably believes to be alcohol, in sealed or unsealed vessels.
- b) To surrender anything in the person’s possession which is, or the authorised person reasonably believes to be, alcohol or likely to be used as a container for alcohol. Any surrendered items are to be retained by the authorised person and safely disposed of as appropriate.”
A report to councillors said: “Thanet is the fourth most densely populated district in Kent (ONS 2015) and has seen a 19% growth in Thanet’s visitor economy (Visit Kent 2016). areas. It is a growing tourist destination with a number of popular areas to visit and socialise in.
“The council works with other agencies to foster a safe and sociable experience when visiting or going out in the district. Residents, businesses and elected members have reported anti social behaviour due to street drinking and alcohol related nuisance in the urban areas, particularly of Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate.
“Local businesses owners have also expressed concern with regards to the increase in tourism alongside the impact and perception of alcohol related disorder.”
The report said Thanet council and Kent Police regularly receive complaints regarding anti social activities associated with alcohol consumption. This has included reports of street drinking and unauthorised events such as beach parties.
Anyone who breaches the PSPO rules could receive a fixed penalty notice of £100.
PSPOs may be enforced by police officers, police community safety officers and any officers designated by Thanet District Council.