As you may know, there is currently a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in force across the Horsham District. This came into effect on 1 April 2018 with the aim of addressing anti-social behaviour and improving public spaces. Each PSPO lasts for three years and the current one expires on 31 March 2021.
Horsham District Council would like to renew the PSPO for a further three years (1 April 2021 – 31 March 2024) and also include new prohibitions.
What is in the current PSPO?
The Horsham District PSPO currently prohibits the following activities:
- Nuisance behaviour relating to alcohol
- Anti-social use of vehicles
- Not picking up dog fouling
- Lack of control of dogs
- Unauthorised access and nuisance behaviour – Horsham town only
- Racing of horse drawn vehicles on any dual carriageway, including the A24 and A264
Suggested additional prohibitions to be included:
No intoxication or possession of psychoactive substances
It is proposed to add a prohibition to the Order that states that no person shall drink, inhale, inject, or otherwise use or be in possession of any intoxicating substances, or “legal highs”, or drug paraphernalia including nitrous oxide canisters.
Horsham Town Only
No unlicensed busking
Licensed buskers are required to meet certain conditions and to make available their badge for inspection by Horsham District Council Neighbourhood Wardens, Police, Environmental Health or Licencing officers. If added to the PSPO, failure to either produce their badge or to stick to the conditions would lead to a fixed penalty notice.
No selling of periodicals which include a prize competition dependent on skill
We have received complaints from the public about companies who purport to being charitable in status when in fact they are for profit, employing aggressive sales tactics and misleading information. Despite challenge, these companies continue to operate considering that they do not require a traders licence as they are running a prize competition based on skill. The tickets are categorised as ‘periodicals’ as the competition is drawn once a year. It is proposed to implement a prohibition to deal with this problem and to tackle the aggressive selling techniques, whilst not affecting legitimate selling such as the Big Issue.
No anti-social behaviour or nuisance behaviour in car parks and stairwells
There have been numerous complaints of anti-social behaviour within the car parks in the town centre, caused by young people consuming alcohol or drugs, causing damage and playing loud music. These activities have given rise to complaints to both the Council and the Police from residents and are causing nuisance, annoyance and distress to other members of the public wishing to use these public spaces.
No drinking of alcohol in The Causeway and Gardens of Remembrance
The Council and Police have received numerous complaints concerning individuals gathering on benches in the Causeway and the Gardens of Remembrance in Horsham town. Those gathering often do so to drink alcohol together and then to on to engage in anti-social behaviour such as public urination, using threatening and abusive language, and being drunk and disorderly. The behaviour from such individuals generally improves upon the arrival of Police or Council staff making it difficult to effectively respond to the issue. It is therefore proposed that the drinking of alcohol within the restricted areas of The Causeway and Gardens of Remembrance is prohibited.
Horsham District Council would like your views on the new prohibitions and whether we should extend the PSPO for a further three years. An online consultation is now live on the Council’s website now: www.horsham.gov.uk/pspoconsultation until 31 January 2021.