Residents are being asked for their views on a two year extension to the existing Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in Walton-on-Thames Town Centre.
Repeated reports of anti-social behaviour in Walton-on-Thames Town Centre to Surrey Police were seen by the Council as having, or likely to have, a detrimental effect on the community’s quality of life. These included reports of substance misuse, underage drinking, and sexual activity, which led to assaults, criminal damage and racially motivated crime and robbery. As a result, Elmbridge Borough Council implemented a PSPO for a specified area of Walton-on -Thames, which came into force on 1 March 2018.
The PSPO is set to expire at midnight on 28 February 2019. Elmbridge Borough Council is considering extending the PSPO in Walton-on-Thames Town Centre for an additional two years with the existing restrictions and requirements which would see the PSPO being in place until 28 February 2021.
The PSPO enables Elmbridge Borough Council to impose restrictions in a particular area with the aim of stopping individuals, or groups, committing anti-social behaviour in public spaces. Since the introduction of the PSPO, recorded incidents of anti-social behaviour in Walton Central have reduced significantly. Between April 2018, there have been 180 recorded incidents of anti-social behaviour by Surrey Police. This equates to 74 fewer recorded incidents of anti-social behaviour between April 2018 and December 2018 (inclusive) compared to the same period in the previous year. This includes a reduction in rowdy, inconsiderate behaviour. However, there have been minor increases in reported incidents of street drinking and drug litter respectively. At this time, no warning letters or fines have been issued.
Councillor Andrew Burley, Portfolio Holder for Community and Social Affairs says, “In order to ensure that the PSPO is fit for purpose, and considers the needs and freedoms of all residents, the Council will be consulting with those living in the PSPO area, as well as discussing with stakeholders such as Surrey Police and the County Council.”
Residents in the PSPO area will receive a letter this week about the proposal for an extension to the PSPO. Local businesses and visitors to the area are also invited to comment on the proposal. The deadline for comments is midnight on 20 January 2019.
Find out more about the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO).
This consultation is now closed.