Booze ban for Essex seaside resort?

TOUGH new laws designed to tackle drinking and anti-social behaviour could be brought in to keep a newly-regenerated seaside resort looking good.Tendring District Council is expected to back a scheme to ensure the problems do not mar the pristine environment of Clacton town centre once a £1.

TOUGH new laws designed to tackle drinking and anti-social behaviour could be brought in to keep a newly-regenerated seaside resort looking good.

Tendring District Council is expected to back a scheme to ensure the problems do not mar the pristine environment of Clacton town centre once a £1.7million refurbishment is completed next March.

Pierre Oxley, the council's portfolio holder for leisure and a member of The Clacton Town Centre Project executive panel, is keen for an “alcohol consumption in designated public places order” to be introduced.

He said: “This is in its initial stages and a study is being done of the fors and againsts, but the key message is that this is a massive investment and it needs to sustain a good environment.


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“There is a slight problem with a handful of people who are being anti-social, sitting around and getting drunk. It does not look good.

“This is the biggest amount ever invested in the town centre and we need to make sure it looks good.”

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The proposed legislation will empower the police to order individuals to stop drinking in the streets and confiscate and dispose of any alcohol in their possession within the designated area.

The seafront area will also be included in the plans, as they do not want anti-social drinking to simply relocate there.

It is hoped the designation order can be implemented to coincide with the completion of the town centre works in March 2007 to give the message that unacceptable behaviour will no longer be tolerated.

Sgt Dave Beverley, of Clacton town neighbourhood policing team, said: “There is not a particular problem in Clacton any more than any other town centre on a Friday or Saturday night.

“We are not looking at people who want to sit down and have a picnic on the beach. We are trying to stop drinking in bus shelters and deal with the local drunks.”

The Home Office launched a plan in August 2000 to tackle the anti-social consumption of alcohol in public places, alcohol-related crime, disorder and nuisance.

Local authorities are now empowered to implement designation orders restricting the consumption of alcohol in public places.

Tendring District Council's cabinet is expected to approve looking further into the scheme when it meets on Wednesday.

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