Consultation begins on Wandsworth’s Public Space Protection Orders

Published: Friday, May 29, 2020

Wandsworth Council has launched a public consultation on a proposed Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) to specifically cover community safety and dog control.

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A PSPO is an element of law introduced by the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 to tackle anti-social behaviour in a flexible and responsive way.

When a PSPO is in place it prohibits specific activity within a defined area and is intended to deal with specific problems that are detrimental to the local community’s quality of life, such as anti-social behaviour.

The council proposes to implement one PSPO which will replace several PSPOs across the borough that need to be refreshed in line with time restrictions set by the legislation. The PSPO will cover the following:

1. Anti-social behaviour caused by drinking alcohol in a public space

Alcohol related anti-social behaviour can quickly escalate and have a significant and lasting impact upon communities.

2. Use and possession of Novel Psychoactive Substances in a public space (chemical substances which produce similar effects to illegal drugs).

The misuse of NPS in the UK is growing and more people are purchasing these drugs online than ever before, with associated negative effects on the physical and mental health of users. For example, Nitrous Oxide, better known as ‘laughing gas,’ these are usually in silver cannisters, which can occasionally be found in public spaces.

3. Dog control in parks and open spaces

In September 2009, Dog Control Orders were implemented for all parks and open spaces across the borough. The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 automatically turned Dog Control Orders into Dog Control PSPOs which are due to expire on 18 October 2020.

4. Dog control on public highways and pavements

As part of the review of Dog Control PSPOs, it is proposed that the Riverside Walk (excluding where it passes through Wandsworth Park and Battersea Park) should be subject to the same PSPOs as other on-street areas.

Breaching a PSPO without a reasonable excuse is a criminal offence and on conviction. A person guilty of an offence is liable to a fine of up to £1000 or can be issued a Fixed Penalty Notice of up to £100.

Councillor Steffi Sutters, Cabinet Member for Community Services and Open Spaces said: “It’s important people tell us what they think of these proposed PSPOs. As a council we are taking the necessary steps to hear the views of residents, amenity groups, stakeholders and businesses in the borough before making any final decisions.

“We can assure you that all responses to the questionnaire will be analysed and carefully considered before being reported to the Council’s relevant Overview and Scrutiny Committees and the General Purposes Committee later in the year.

“If implemented, the PSPOs would be introduced for three years and reviewed on a regular basis.”

We would like to hear the views of residents and businesses on any aspect of the proposed PSPOs. You can read more about the proposed orders here

If you wish to comment and provide feedback please do so by Sunday July 5 2020. You can comment online. 

If you need the questionnaire in paper or any other format, please contact the Council at: communitysafety@richmondandwandsworth.gov.uk