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Plans to stamp out pub violence in Ashley Cross
CALLS have been made for action against the “horrifying” behaviour of some people spilling out of the pubs and clubs.
The demands came as councillors backed extra powers for police to crack down on drinking in public at Ashley Cross.
Police want an order which would give them the authority to confiscate alcohol and arrest people who do not comply.
But Cllr Jo Clements told the Newtown and Parkstone area committee: “It seems to me that a lot of anti-social behaviour that occurs is not through people carrying drink on them, it’s through people coming out of the establishments absolutely in a terrible state and behaving horribly.
“I’ve seen some horrible things happen down there. It seems to me that’s something that needs to be addressed as well. I’ve seen people being sick in gardens and doing all sorts of lewd behaviour in the streets and it’s just horrifying.”
She added: “It’s a really unique problem for Ashley Cross because it’s in the middle of such a residential built-up area but there are so many of these establishments and they’re packed to brimming.
“They queue outside and spill out on the streets.”
Seaview Residents Association committee member Tony Bessant said the area had changed.
“How they got consent to have so many hostelries, drinking places, I just do not understand. I do not think it’s a good balance,” he said.
Dorset Police wants to make parts of Ashley Cross the subject of an Alcohol Consumption Designated Public Place Order (DPPO), giving extra powers to officers. Mr Bessant said proposals concentrated on one side of Ashley Cross and should be extended to cover the other side, including North Road, St Peter’s Road and Springfield Road.
The committee agreed to support the order, subject to a review of the listed roads. The council’s licensing committee will make the final decision.
Parkstone councillor Ann Stribley said: “I think the order’s a great idea because it does mean you can have a drink in the street or the park but if there’s a problem, the police can deal with it.”
Council officer Frank Wenzel said the order would not affect responsible drinking, such as on picnics at Ashley Green. “This is a small step in the right direction but there are other issues that need to be addressed,” he added.
What residents think
Ashley Cross resident Paul Reading said: “It’s busy but I haven’t noticed much trouble. I like having all the different kind of outlets for people to come to. I don’t like any drunkenness or unpleasant behaviour but I like the atmosphere.”
• Georgie McCourt, local resident, said: “I don’t really think there is a problem at all. I might hear the odd person shouting on a night but other than that this is a great place to live. Ashley Cross is a really nice, safe place for a night out.”
• Resident Chris Chaisty said: “I don’t see a problem with the bars and pubs in the area at all and I live just around the corner.
I work in the local A&E and we do see a few busted heads from time to time, but nothing compared to Bournemouth.”