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You said: BAN street drinking

A town centre drinking ban has been recommended following consultation with the public by Boston Borough Council.

Consultation with the public revealed that 97 per cent said the borough council should introduce a total ban in drinking alcohol in defined public places, 94 per cent believed that people should not be allowed to drink alcohol in public places such as the street and parks and the same number thought there was a problem with drinking in public in the town centre. Central Park was highlighted as one of the worst problem areas.

Members of the council's environment and performance committee will consider the way forward when they meet on Wednesday night.

Cllr Stephen Woodliffe, Boston Borough Council's portfolio holder for regulatory services, said: "Members of the committee are very concerned about these issues and I will encourage an open-ended debate so that all avenues are fully explored, taking into account all the evidence placed before us.

"Many members of the public have expressed their views in very forthright terms, which reflects the deep public concern that exists with this particular issue."

The committee has been asked to recommend a complete ban on street drinking in the town centre area currently subject to the drinking in public places order (DPPO) with the addition of the lower High Street area. This would also have the effect of banning drinking in other public places such as parks and public open spaces.

DPPOs, which do not have the effect of a total drinking ban - in place since 2007 - are due to be replaced by Community Protection Orders, giving councils the authority to introduce total street drinking bans if deemed necessary. DPPOs only allowed for removal of alcohol and offenders by police if connected with anti-social behaviour.

Councillors will hear in a report prepared by Peter Hunn, the council's principal community safety officer, and Lincolnshire Police, that a relatively high number of incidents in Boston requiring a police presence are alcohol related. In 2013 9.1 per cent of all police incidents in the borough were alcohol related compared with an average for Lincolnshire of 6.6 per cent. Alcohol-related anti-social behaviour and concern for safety incidents during daylight hours increased in Boston by 18 per cent between 2006 to 2010 and 2011 to 2013. There were indications that this level decreased in 2013, possibly due to increased police and community safety activities - Operation Dakota. But there is no evidence to suggest that the DPPO displaced street drinker from hot-spot areas to other areas outside the DPPO zone.

But there is evidence that street-drinking hotspots have moved to areas where new off-licences have opened.

The new Community Protection Orders could be in place early next year and a breach of a new drinks ban order could be a maximum fine of £1,000.

The police commented that street drinking and associated anti-social behaviour is a significant problem in the town, intimidating and impacting on visitors and so has a social and economic impact. The police and Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick opted for a complete drinks ban in the current town centre DPPO area with the addition of the lower High Street area.