Anna Smith welcomes the Labour Council's Adoption of Measures to Tackle Alcohol Fuelled Anti-Social Behaviour in Petersfield Space
Cambridge Labour Councillors last fulfilled an election pledge last night when they agreed a Public Space Protection Order (or PSPO) for Petersfield Green play area, Ditchburn Place over 60s recreation area, and Mill Road Cemetery.
The libdems abstained after a last ditch attempt to scupper the wishes of the electorate
Anna Smith Labours candidate in Romsey says "This is another Labour promise fulfilled"
"This order has been needed for a long time. As a local resident myself, I have seen the situation deteriorate over the last few years, and from my frequent conversations on the doorstep, I know this is a big issue for others too. It is great to see the Labour Council take action on this after the failure of the previous council to address the issue effectively.
I am disappointed to discover that Labour has had to achieve this despite, rather than in partnership with, the Libdems. Locals have a clear and understandable desire to be able to use these public spaces again, and I would have hoped to see the Libdems being prepared to work with us to achieve this."
Local police said at the meeting the detailed approach in the new Order is right to make a real difference in cutting anti-social behaviour by drunk visitors to these spaces.
The Liberal Democrats moved an amendment to say that the police should only be able to act when there people were in the act of Anti-Social Behaviour at exactly the same time as drinking but Labour Councillors and the police representative at the Committee, Inspector Matt Johnson, said that the power was needed to tackle situations also when people were drunk before and after such acts as well. In the final vote, there was no opposition to Labour’s proposal, supported by local police, and supported by the representatives and resident groups responsible for each of the three spaces and 68% of the public in an extensive recent local council consultation.
"Labour has invested money in helping people with alcohol difficulties and this action is designed to reduce hostility to a particular group that have taken over certain areas of public space and act in a way which prevents other people enjoying the space.
There has been no action taken against people in other areas of Romsey (such as the benches outside of the Co-op and at the end of Cavendish Road) who do not create a public nuisance with alcohol-fuelled anti-social behaviour."
Councillor Lewis Herbert, Council Leader and responsible for policing issues said ‘This is an intentionally clearly worded order for these three community spaces, which have suffered a decade of being taken over by groups of drunks, and a decade of inaction by the former Lib Dem-run City Council. Parents with children, elderly people and cemetery visitors including dog walkers and residents are entitled to action to prevent their being intimidated and stop excessive damage caused to these three number spaces which are all that nearby residents have for recreation at this end of Mill Road.'
Any further use of these powers needed in other locations will be considered, case by case, if needed and different approaches may be used to anti-social drinking or issues like inadequate dog control in other local areas. This new measure takes effect from 1st June.’
Cllr Lewis Herbert, Leader of Cambridge City Council, said: “Elderly residents of Ditchburn Place, parents wanting to use the Petersfield Green play park, and cemetery visitors have seen repeated problems with street drinking that has resulted in anti-social behaviour in these three areas near to Mill Road.
- Reports presented to council committees are available on the council’s website: http://democracy.cambridge.gov.uk/ieDocHome.aspx;