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Public space protection order considered to reduce anti-social behaviour in Eton

Public space protection order considered to reduce anti-social behaviour in Eton

David Lee

Public space protection order considered to reduce anti-social behaviour in Eton

The introduction of a public space protection order (PSPO) covering anti-social behaviour (ASB) hotspots in Eton will not be a ‘silver bullet’, according to a nearby homeowner.

Members of the borough’s Public Space Protection Order Panel met at Windsor Guildhall on Wednesday to discuss whether a PSPO should be introduced to cover the Eton Brocas, Meadow Lane Car Park and Footpath 51.

If approved by the panel, the PSPO would grant police and community wardens patrolling the areas the power to confiscate alcohol from those behaving anti-socially.

But Paul Edwards, chairman of the Eton Thameside Management Company, told the panel that those powers should not be seen as a magical solution to the town’s ongoing ASB problems.

He said: “While these powers are a useful tool in the fight against any alcohol related anti-social behaviour, they are by no means a silver bullet.

“For these additional related powers to be effective there must be appropriate resources in place to enforce them.”

A public consultation was carried out in December asking residents if they wanted to see a PSPO introduced.

In the agenda for the meeting, Emlyn Buildings, of Brocas Street, states: “There are groups of winos and vagrants who hang around on the Brocas, drinking heavily and making it quite intimidating to spend time there.”

The Express also reported last month that Eton Town Council had submitted an application to replace a bench in Brocas Street to prevent homeless people from sleeping on it.

The panel also discussed an application seeking to introduce time-locked gates which could restrict public access on Footpath 51 which runs nearby the Eton Thameside development.

Mr Edwards told the panel that locked gates were required to give residents of the residential development ‘further protection’ against late-night ASB.

But the application was opposed by Eton Town Council.

Speaking from the public gallery at the meeting, Helen Price said: “If you’re minded to grant this, I would urge that you think about people and ramblers on summer evenings, particularly people who want to go out walking late at night.”

The panel said a decision on both proposals should be made within three working days.

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