The Council is set to confirm new restrictions on the use of Acomb Green at a meeting taking place on 20th June.
On Acomb Green during 2015, North Yorkshire Police were called to 49 incidents, 44 of which were ASB and there were 5 criminal incidents.
The proposed ban, first announced in March, covers:
- Banning the drinking of alcohol
- The ability to remove large groups of 3 or more people who are causing anti-social behaviour (ASB)
- Banning under 16’s from the possession of lighters in the play area
- Setting the amount of any Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) at £100, which would be reduced to £75 if paid within the first 14 days.
The proposals received the support of over 90% of residents who responded to a Council consultation on the issue. This is similar to the number who responded to a separate survey included in the last issue of the local Focus newsletter. Ward Councillors and local Police also supported the restrictions.
Many residents wrote to highlight the problems that they had witnessed on The Green.
Asked whether there were any other improvement s that they would like to see, residents said a CCTV camera should be installed and they also felt that more enforcement action should be taken against dog fouling.
The “Public Space Protection Order” is likely to become effective later in the year
West Bank Park
Separately the Council is set to go ahead with similar restrictions in West Bank Park.
Here the Executive member is being recommended to impose a requirement that dogs should be kept on a lead between 8:00am and 6:00pm. Residents, in a consultation poll, had opposed this idea by 101 votes to 32.
There are nearly 100 cameras monitoring public order issues and traffic conditions in York 24/7.
A copy of the camera location list can be downloaded by clicking here.
The Council spends around £300,000 a year on the service and it procured a new maintenance contract last June.
The effectiveness of the cameras is not routinely reported to any Council committee.
In Westfield, there are cameras located on Bramham Road and near the junction of Front Street & York Road. The future of the camera in Bramham Road – currently an Anti Social Behaviour (ASB) hotspot – was threatened in 2012 when the Labour controlled Council refused to pay the license fee.
With ASB on the increase in parts of the City, there have been calls for an extension of monitoring arrangements to problem locations like Acomb Green.
In the meantime, the Council and North Yorkshire Police must reassure residents that the existing cameras are sited at optimum locations and that systems to alert the Police to developing incidents – particularly in sub-urban areas – are effective and producing results.
The Council is to consult residents on introducing Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs) to tackle the problems caused by youths in West Bank Park and Acomb Green.
The proposal will be considered on 4th April.
Acomb Green Play area group in 2011
Options that the Council could look at introducing, through a PSPO, include:
- A ban on drinking alcohol in both areas;
- The ability to remove large groups of 3 or more people who are causing anti-social behaviour for both sites;
- Banning the possession of lighters by under 16’s in the play area.
- A ban on people riding bicycles or motorised bikes through West Bank Park;
- Ensuring that dogs are kept on a lead at West Bank Park (current position) or relaxing this at certain times;
The proposals have been prompted by an increasing number of complaints about anti-social behaviour during the summer months. Between April and September, the police responded to 33 complaints about gangs gathering on the Green together with 4 about drunken behaviour and a further 4 where an attempt was made to set fire to the play equipment.
Similar issues arose at West Bank Park
If supported, the restrictions – which can be enforced by one the spot penalty notices – would also apply to the streets surrounding The Green.
Crime levels have been creeping up in York recently and residents will be expecting to see some effective remedies proposed by the candidates who are standing in the crime commissioner elections which are taking place in May.