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Alcohol control zone comes into force in Merstham
5:22pm Monday 23rd September 2013 in News
Part of Merstham has been made an alcohol controlled area.
The control, known as a Designated Public Places Order (DPPO), came into force today.
Aiming to tackle anti-social behaviour, the Order gives police officers greater powers to ask people to stop drinking alcohol in public places if they are causing a nuisance. Virtually the whole of South Merstham is covered by the DPPO. The DPPO includes the railway station, London Road South to the junction with New Battlebridge Lane, and London Road North from the junction with Station Road North to the north side of the motorway bridge. Extending to cover some 80 roads, including some in Redhill, the area is generally bounded by the M25 to the north, Mercers Country Park and Holmethorpe to the south, and extends east to just short of Coppice Lea, and west to the edge of Merstham, just beyond the A23 London Road South and North High Street. Roads covered include Taynton Drive, School Hill, Wyecliffe Gardens, Worsted Green and Huddleston Crescent. The proposal to bring the Order in in Merstham followed complaints to Surrey Police about nuisance created by people drinking in public. After a four-week consultation period with residents, the DPPO was agreed, and will now be implemented and enforced by the police. Signs have been put up so that residents know where the order is in force.
Rita Renton, Reigate and Banstead Borough Council executive member for health, said: “Tackling the misuse of alcohol and drugs is a priority for our Community Safety Partnership.”
Coun Renton said: “We want all residents to enjoy living in areas that are safe and free from anti-social behaviour, which the misuse of alcohol can lead to. “The DPPO will help to make sure that Merstham is a safe area to live in.”
Merstham Neighbourhood Officer PC Emily Brunt, said: “We will vigorously enforce the DPPO in Merstham to reduce complaints from local residents and businesses around street drinking and the associated anti-social behaviour this causes.”
She said: “We have seen a significant drop in alcohol-related anti-social behaviour in Redhill town centre since the introduction of the DPPO in that area, and we hope the same will happen in Merstham.”
A DPPO was introduced in Redhill town centre in October 2007 and enforced by Surrey Police. It has led to a reduction in complaints about anti-social public drinking from traders, residents and shoppers. A DPPO does not make it an offence to consume alcohol. It gives Police and Police Community Support Officers the powers to ask people to stop drinking alcohol in public places, confiscate alcohol and dispose of it where appropriate, and hand out £500 fines if someone continues to drink alcohol after being asked to stop. The Reigate and Banstead Community Safety partnership is made up of Reigate and Banstead Borough Council, Surrey Police and Surrey County Council, with groups and bodies including Surrey and Sussex Probation Trust, Surrey Fire and Rescue Service and Raven Housing Trust.