Parks and streets feel 'unsafe' due to drinkers

PUBLISHED: 13:00 28 July 2014

Drinkers are 'intimidating' according to some Mercury readers.

Drinkers are 'intimidating' according to some Mercury readers.

Archant

'WESTON does not feel safe' and some parents will not take their children to its parks because of the number of 'intimidating' people drinking alcohol in the street, it has been claimed.

The town centre and seafront fall under a designated public places order, meaning it is an offence to carry on drinking alcohol when a police officer asks someone to stop.

But some Mercury readers have reported the number of people drinking alcohol, swearing and fighting in the town centre and parks has increased.

Grove Park, Alexandra Parade, West Street and the Italian Gardens are some of the problem areas where people have reported feeling ‘unsafe’ and ‘uncomfortable’.

Melody Louise Cox said it was a ‘massive problem’, and added: “During the day Grove Park and the Italian Gardens are the worst areas. I can’t and don’t feel comfortable taking my kids there to play now.”

Will Poole said: “It’s simple, extend 
the alcohol-free zone, additional CCTV, and increase the quantity of street wardens. Local businesses and the general public feel unsafe in the town centre. Not the image Weston is trying to aspire to be.”

Heidi Griffin said: “I don’t venture into Weston now unless I have to. I’ll echo a lot of the above comments, Weston just doesn’t feel safe.”

Police have recently gained an antisocial behaviour order against a persistent street-drinker, which imposed strict conditions on his alcohol possession in Weston.

After he breached the conditions, he was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison.

Sergeant Mark Jenkinson, from the Weston Town Centre Policing Team, said: “Alcohol-related antisocial behaviour and disorder is not welcome in the town and we have and will continue to take robust action against it.

“We want to ensure that people to enjoy themselves here and not be intimidated or put up with bad behaviour from people who have had too much to drink or cannot behave well after they have had alcohol.

“We have been working hard to tackle street drinking and have 
had great success, particularly over the past 12 months. But we aren’t complacent and will continue to 
take proactive action wherever possible.”

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