Plans for ban on boozing in Ipswich

STREET drinking will be banned throughout the entire borough of Ipswich if new proposals are given the go-ahead this month, The Evening Star can reveal.

STREET drinking will be banned throughout the entire borough of Ipswich if new proposals are given the go-ahead this month, The Evening Star can reveal.

Back in November the Star reported that council bosses are contemplating introducing a designated public places order (DPPO) in the town centre which would give police powers to fine or even arrest people who continue drinking booze when asked to stop.

Town centre traders have been concerned for some time about groups of drinkers putting off customers and intimidating staff.

It has now emerged that the council is looking to ban drinking throughout the entire borough over fears a partial ban will simply displace drinkers to residential areas.


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The proposals are due to go to executive council later this month.

If councillors give the idea the thumbs up the idea will go out to public consultation and the ban could be in place by the summer should the feedback be positive.

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Tibbs Pinter, substance misuse officer at Ipswich Borough Council, said: “We are thinking at the moment of trying to go borough-wide which should be the real discussion at the executive committee.

“If we do the borough in one go we will not be moving or displacing people who would previously drink on a bench in the town centre and shifting them to a residential area.

“Norwich has had the problem where people just move across the line and drink.”

A similar public drinking ban was introduced across Coventry in October.

Police there have said complaints about rowdy drinking in certain areas of the city have dropped by two-thirds since it came into force.

Besides plans for a booze-ban Ipswich Borough Council is already working to address long-term issues surrounding street drinking.

Research into the issue has revealed there is a hardcore of between 20 and 30 drinkers aged between 30 and 40 who frequent benches in the town centre.

The council has already removed a number of benches in the town centre where drinkers were known to gather.

However traders have reported drinkers simply moving to different benches near different shops and stores.

WEBLINK

www.ipswich.gov.uk

Would you support a borough-wide booze ban? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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