Street drinking, spitting and begging could be banned in Ilford

Enforcement officers Awais Shahzada and Ammanuel Asfaw with reporter Matt Clemenson on a patrol in Ilford town centre.

Enforcement officers Awais Shahzada and Ammanuel Asfaw with reporter Matt Clemenson on a patrol in Ilford town centre. Redbridge Council wants to ban spitting, street drinking and deficating in Ilford. - Credit: Archant

Redbridge Council plans to ban street drinking, spitting and other anti-social behaviour in Ilford town centre.

The council’s head of civic pride and enforcement, John Richards, announced that the local authority aims to introduce a public space protection order (PSPO) at the external scrutiny panel on Thursday.

The PSPO would cover the wards of Loxford, Clementswood and Valentines, and ban public urination, spitting and begging.

Enforcement officers would be able to confiscate alcohol and issue fixed penalty notices, as well as having greater control over buskers and chuggers.

Mr Richards told councillors at Redbridge Town Hall: “We are looking to take a less tolerant approach to crime and disorder.

“We want Ilford people to see Ilford for what it can be, a thriving and safe place.”

Head of community safety Mark Benbow explained the PSPO would give enforcement officers more tools to stop street drinkers.

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The council also plans to extend CCTV and LED lighting down York Road, Mansfield Road and Balfour Road.

Cllr Ross Hatfull (Lab, Valentines) linked the proposals to the recent police operation, which saw 17 people arrested and charged for drugs related offences near Ilford station.

“We will keep improving, extending the CCTV, doing little things small steps, working with the Metropolitan Police and a range of partnerships to try and stop this problem,” he said.

Redbridge borough commander Ch Supt Mandy Beacher said the force “welcomed it”.

“It’s another facet to stopping people committing crime. It takes a lot of work, but we think it’s worth it.

“We want to make it a hostile environment, we want people to feel safe, but make it hostile for criminals.”

Earlier in the meeting George Thompson from Youth Council told the panel that members were scared to walk in the town centre at night, and once had to flee back to the town hall for fear of being assaulted.

The proposals will go out to consultation in November, and the council aims to have the PSPO in place at the start of the new year.

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