The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead is consulting on a proposal to continue legal powers to help authorities with tackling anti-social behaviour related to the drinking of alcohol in public spaces.
Over the years, many streets, car parks and other public areas in the borough have been covered by bylaws helping authorities address problem drinking, with the most recent legislation being a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) dating from 2019.
With PSPOs lasting a limited time before needing review, the council is holding a five-week consultation, from today (Wednesday 14 June) until midnight on Wednesday 19 July, on its proposal to continue these same powers under a new PSPO to run for three years.
If approved by Full Council, the PSPO will allow police or other authorised officers to continue to be able to ask someone causing anti-social behaviour to stop drinking or hand over their alcohol, including any unopened cans and bottles. If that person does not comply, they could then be issued with a £100 fixed penalty notice.
The consultation asks people if they agree or disagree with the proposal, and offers the opportunity to make any further comments or suggestions, and share experiences of any other anti-social behaviour issues in public spaces.
For further details and to take part, please visit https://rbwmtogether.rbwm.gov.uk/public-spaces-protection-orders-pspo-consultation or use the public-access computers available at all local libraries, where staff are happy to help you get online if needed. If you require paper copies of the consultation documents, these are also available from libraries upon request.
Councillor Simon Werner, Council Leader and Cabinet member for Community Partnerships, Public Protection and Maidenhead, said: “This is a public consultation and the decision will be a matter for Full Council once feedback has been analysed and shared. I encourage everyone to have their say to help inform the future views, discussions and decision of councillors.”
Andy Aldridge, Community Safety manager, said: “This proposal to continue these powers will support the council and police in working together to tackle anti-social behaviour, supporting community safety and the quality of life for residents.
“Crucially, this is not a blanket ban on drinking alcohol in public spaces: the focus remains on tackling anti-social behaviour related to drinking in public spaces where there is a higher risk of issues, including our town centres. The option for people to drink responsibly is retained, while enabling authorities to take a firm line against anti-social behaviour, which we know is expected by our residents.
“As with our other PSPOs, its aim isn’t to hand out fines – its purpose is to support frontline officers in engaging effective with those minority of people who cause these issues, to encourage voluntary compliance and behaviour change, and prevent further incidents, while providing the option to use enforcement where needed.”