Bid to beat boozing on the streets

IPSWICH: A crackdown on street drinking has lead to hundreds of beer cans being confiscated around the town.

IPSWICH: A crackdown on street drinking has lead to hundreds of beer cans being confiscated around the town.

Officers from the Central Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) have been targeting areas affected by anti-social drinking as part of the police's SMILE (Safety Makes Ipswich Life Enjoyable) campaign.

The operation to rid the town of street drinkers, which began earlier this year, involved officers confiscating open containers of alcohol and dispersing the groups of drinkers.

Officers were deployed in the town centre on 12 enforcement days which ran throughout the summer. Signs were also placed in many problem areas informing drinkers to move on.

More than 450 bottles and cans have been confiscated since the operation began in April. Nine arrests have also been made for public order and drug offences.

At the beginning of the operation, police had identified 12 separate areas in central Ipswich as being of concern, including Lady Lane, Black Horse Lane and Upper Orwell Street - this has now been reduced to two.

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Pc John Alcock, Street Drinking Liaison Officer, said: “Street drinking became a big problem in the central Ipswich area.

“While the campaign days are now coming to an end, officers from the SNT are continuing to seize containers on a daily basis and it remains a priority.

“While the problem has not been eradicated from the town, significant reductions are apparent and the campaign can be considered a success, particularly when compared to the size of the problem in recent years.”

Suffolk Constabulary's SMILE campaign, which has been backed by the Evening Star, aims to portray Ipswich as a safe place for night-time revellers and daytime shoppers.

n. Do you think enough is done to combat street drinking? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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