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Sefton Council are planning a consultation period to develop a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) for Coastal & Visitor Areas of Sefton, and to offer comment on the proposed consultation process.

The public consultation will run from the 20th May to 24th June (5 weeks) to enable
the order to be active from July 2022 to July 2025.

For example, on the spot fines of £75 could be issued for anyone caught drinking on beaches in Sefton while committing anti-social behaviour.

The Sefton Coast, and associated towns and villages are popular destinations for
tourists and residents to visit – there are circa 6 million people within an hour’s drive
of the Coast. Although by far most visitors adhere to appropriate behaviour, there are
some visitors that act in an inappropriate manner, causing distress and disturbance
to local residents and businesses, as well as causing damage to the infrastructure in
the area. A PSPO is proposed to enable officers and partner agencies to better
manage visitor behaviour at the Coast.

Sefton Council have numerous Byelaws specifically relating to the coastal areas,
which already cover the proposed prohibitions. However, enforcement of the
Byelaws is laborious and in practice it is rare for the Council to be awarded the full
legal costs of the prosecution. As such the usage of Public Spaces Protection Orders
are favoured by many Local Authorities as there is the opportunity to issue fixed
penalty notices at the time of the offence being committed, giving the public an
opportunity to discharge the offence by way of a fine rather than receive a criminal
conviction, for what can be perceived as a low-level offence.

The Cabinet Member Reference Group that oversees the delivery of the Visitor
Action Plan have requested that officers explore developing, consulting on, and
enacting a three-year PSPO to address issues of concern on the Coast, and to areas
of visitor pressure in the borough.

Officers are developing the list of restrictions to be included in the PSPO, including a
restriction on behaviour when drinking alcohol in certain locations. These will be
based on the existing Sefton Byelaws and in line with legislation associated with the
protected status of the Sefton Coast.

For example, the areas affected by a proposed alcohol restriction have been
identified by Sefton Anti-Social Behaviour Unit, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service,
and Merseyside Police as areas being used by people to drink alcohol and use the
area to congregate and cause Anti-Social Behaviour and low-level crime. This does
have a detrimental effect upon visitors using the area. This order will enable
authorised officers to request the confiscation of alcohol from those who are causing
Anti-Social Behaviour. If they refuse to hand over alcohol, they can be issued with a
Fixed Penalty Notice.

This order does not ban alcohol for those using it in a responsible manner.

Sefton Council will carry out its consultation via its consultation portal, YourSeftonYourSay.

Hard copy versions of the questionnaire will also be available.