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These are the ten Suffolk towns set to have orders banning street drinking scrapped

PUBLISHED: 05:30 29 August 2019

Police powers mean public orders banning street drinking are no longer needed in East Suffolk, according to the cabinet. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Police powers mean public orders banning street drinking are no longer needed in East Suffolk, according to the cabinet. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Orders to ban street drinking in East Suffolk are set to be scrapped next week, after council chiefs said they were not needed.

Steve Gallant, East Suffolk Council leader, reassured people the issue would still be enforced by several existing laws. Picture: PAUL NIXON/EAST SUFFOLK COUNCILSteve Gallant, East Suffolk Council leader, reassured people the issue would still be enforced by several existing laws. Picture: PAUL NIXON/EAST SUFFOLK COUNCIL

East Suffolk Council has 10 public space protection orders (PSPOs) designed to crack down on issues such as sreet drinking, which are then enforced by the police.

But the council's cabinet next week is set to agree removing all 10 of those, because new police powers to deal with anti-social behaviour meant they were no longer needed.

Conservative council leader Steve Gallant said: "Following consultation with the public, the police and town and parish councils, there is no evidence to support the need for the continuation of the PSPOs.

"Instead we will focus on making better use of new legislative powers, such as community protection notice and dispersal powers where necessary - something we have our partners' full support in.

Graham Elliott from the Liberal Democrat, Green and Independent group said those powers needed to be used only where it was appropriate. Picture: NICK BUTCHERGraham Elliott from the Liberal Democrat, Green and Independent group said those powers needed to be used only where it was appropriate. Picture: NICK BUTCHER

"As well as the new anti-social behaviour legislation, there are other pieces of legislation that can be used to deal with the issues covered by the PSPOs, including the Confiscation of Alcohol (Young Persons) Act 1997, the Public Order Act and drunk and disorderly offences.

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"I would like to reassure residents that local communities will not be disadvantaged or left at risk by the removal of the PSPOs."

The PSPOs to be removed will only be those for street drinking, and do not include more recent orders such dogs on Felixstowe beach or legal highs at Latitude.

The orders were introduced in 2007 and 2008, and covered designated areas in Felixstowe, Woodbridge, Martlesham, Kesgrave, Saxmundham, Leiston, Kelsale, Framlingham, Wickham Market and Rushmere.

The consultation found that 43% did not understand what the PSPOs were, and only 23% of respondents did.

According to the cabinet report, the cost of removing signs will be between £800 and £1,000.

Graham Elliott, leader of the opposition Liberal Democrat, Green and Independent group at East Suffolk Council, said: "I think it's a positive step.

"They have got to be used where they are appropriate - we don't want to stop people being able to have a glass of wine on their picnic, we use these powers only when there is a real problem to solve."

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