Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Council ignore senior police advice and press on with no alcohol zones

THURROCK COUNCIL voted last night to press ahead with designated public protection orders (DPPO’s) despite advice from senior police officers that there was no evidence that they were needed.

Chief Inspector Richard Baxter and former assistant chief constable and now council public protection boss, Jim Nicolson sat stony faced as the Thurrock councillors ‘pulled rank” and voted through orders that they hoped would reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

The orders relate to the Flowers Estate in South Ockendon, Blackshots Fields in Grays and Delafield Park in Little Thurrock and relate to powers to take action against over-18’s, annoyance and the consumption of alcohol.

Senior police had told the councillors that there was no identifiable problem in the said areas and that there was sufficient legislation in place to take robust action.

Labour had also objected on the grounds of cost but sensing public mood they voted with the Tories who, having spoken to their residents, believed that there was a real need for such action.

Tory councillors’ Maney, Arnold and Gledhill made impassioned speeches backing the orders.

But one former police officer poured scorn on the idea. Security consultant Grant Campbell said: “If you go to magistrates courts, you will see hardly any public order offences coming before the bench.

“If and if anyone is arrested, they will be soon released without charge.”

4 COMMENTS

  1. I pretty sure the senior Police officers realise that most of the time they won’t beable to enforce these powers, due to lack of personell.

  2. These DPPO’s simply do not work, take a walk through Grays Town Centre or Grays Park and you will see people drinking quite openly and on several occasions I have witnessed the local police walking or driving straight past these people without even stopping.

    Maybe it is lack of police or the simple fact that the courts just turn a blind eye to this behaviour when presented in court but the simple truth is that these DPPO’s are not working on Thurrock and how TBC cannot see this fact is beyond belief.

  3. I fully support any measure which will raise awareness of the drink issue in the Borough. But also very aware of the lack of enforcement in Grays Town centre. Groups are openly flaunting the bans at the Old Station Masters Office and on the benches. Saturday morning there are cans left on the Cenotaph regularly now. Delafield Park has been transformed in the past four years but cans and bottles are a problem. A big thanks to the small groups who regularly litter pick.

  4. The Conservatives are now complaining that the report that went to the Licensing Committee and Full Council was flawed and misleading. If so surely the consultation should start again, the report re written and voted on again by the Licensing Committee and Full Council?

    If the whole report and consultation was flawed as the Conservatives now claim then this could be challenged at a Judicial Review by anyone who objects to the DPPOs at great expense to the Council?

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