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Consultation on extending the duration of public spaces protection orders currently in force

From 1 September to Tuesday 13 October 2020 we carried out a public consultation over a proposal to extend the duration of all public places protection orders (PSPOs) currently in place in Lewes District and Eastbourne. 

What are public spaces protection orders?

PSPOs are measures councils can put in place to protect the community from anti-social behaviour. They put conditions or restrictions on what people can do within a specific area if there is evidence to suggest that the persistent or continuing impact of the behaviour makes it unreasonable. Breaching a PSPO can be a criminal offence punishable by a fine or prosecution.

Current orders in Lewes district and Eastbourne 

There are currently two orders in place in Lewes district intended to prevent:

  • consumption of alcohol in any street in Lewes town centre 
  • dog fouling in any public area of the district.

There are currently four orders in place in Eastbourne intended to prevent:

  • consumption of alcohol in any street in Eastbourne town centre
  • dog fouling in any public area of the borough
  • dogs being off the lead in certain areas of the borough either at all times or at certain times of the year
  • dogs entering specified areas of the borough either at all times or at certain times of the year.

How we consulted

We proposed to extend the current six PSPOs on a like-for-like basis for a further three year period ending in November 2023.

We provided an online survey for respondents to complete to share their feedback. We offered paper copies of the survey and also the consultation information in different formats and languages.

We promoted the consultation through social media, on our website, directly by email to all of consultation mailing list subscribers, to all respondents to the 2017 PSPO consultations, through the local media and on social media. The consultation was also discussed on the LDC Leader’s facebook live Q&A sessions on multiple occasions.

In addition, and to comply with statutory consultation requirements, we wrote to the following organisations inviting responses: 

  • All town and parish councils in the Lewes district.
  • The Police and Crime Commissioner for Sussex
  • Sussex Police
  • Sovereign Harbour Residents Association 
  • Sovereign Harbour Neighbourhood Panel 

Responses to the consultation

There was broad support for extending the current PSPOs on a like for like basis, with some respondents stating they believe the duration should be extended for longer if permitted.

We received 164 consultation responses from individuals and 9 from organisations. These were 

  • Eastbourne Business Crime Group
  • Lewes Town Council
  • Marks & Spencer PLC
  • 720 Taxis
  • The Hart (pub)
  • Guide Dogs
  • Sovereign Harbour Residents Association
  • Sovereign Harbour Neighbourhood Panel
  • Seaford Town Council

89% of respondents answered yes to the question 'Do you think that extending the duration of the PSPOs is necessary to prevent the anti-social behaviour identified in the orders from occurring or recurring?'. 

86% of respondents answered yes to the question 'Do you think that extending the duration of the PSPOs is necessary to prevent the anti-social behaviour identified in the orders from occurring more frequently or more seriously than at present?'.

88% of respondents answered yes to the question 'If you believe the duration of the current PSPOs should be extended, do you think they should last a further three years (the maximum term allowed)?'. 

Next steps 

A summary of the consultation responses was shared with the Director of Service Delivery and a decision was made in consultation with the relevant Lead Members that the duration of the existing PSPOs would be extended for a further three years.