Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO)

Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs) were introduced by the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, and are intended to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in a particular area that is detrimental to the local community’s quality of life.

This is done by imposing conditions on the use of that area, which apply to everyone. PSPOs are designed to ensure that the law-abiding majority can use and enjoy public spaces, safe from anti-social behaviour.

Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPO) are designed to stop individuals or groups committing anti-social behaviour in public places.

 Under the Act, the Council can:

  • set blanket restrictions and requirements;
  • set targeted restrictions and requirements against certain behaviours by certain groups at certain times;
  • restrict access to public spaces (including certain types of highway) where that route is being used to commit anti-social behaviour;

PSPOs can be enforced by a police officer, a community support officer, or Council officers.

The legal tests: The legal tests focus on the impact that anti-social behaviour is having on victims and communities. The Public Spaces Protection Orders that are in place have been made by the council as the activities or the behaviour concerned , carried out, or likely to be carried out  in a public space

  • have had, or are likely to have, a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality;
  • is, or is likely to be, persistent or continuing in nature;
  • is, or is likely to be, unreasonable; and
  • justifies the restrictions imposed.

Any person who without reasonable excuse:

  • does anything that they are prohibited from doing by a PSPO; or
  • fails to comply with a requirement to which the person is subject under a PSPO;

 Commits an offence.

On 18 October 2016 Cabinet approved an 8 week consultation period relating to both the types of anti-social behaviour to be covered by the PSPO and the proposed area it was to cover. Due to the level of interest the consultation was extended until 16 January 2017.

On 11 April 2017 Cabinet received a report setting out the consultation feedback together with an amended draft PSPO, which they recommended for approval. On 18 May 2017 Council approved the revised PSPO.

As a result the Scarborough Public Space Protection Order 2017 was introduced on 1 July 2017.

The duration of the PSPO is 3 years, and at any point before expiry the Council can extend, vary or discharge it.

Area covered by the PSPO

The PSPO applies to all land:

  • which is open to the air (including land which is covered but open to the air on at least one side);
  • to which the public are entitled or permitted to have access (with or without payment); and
  • which is outlined in red on the plan below.

Map of the area covered by the PSPO.

What is in the council’s PSPO?

The PSPO includes provisions relating to street drinking, psychoactive substances, and urination and defecation.

Street drinking

The PSPO makes it an offence to fail to comply without reasonable excuse with any requirement of a constable or authorised person;

  • to cease consumption of alcohol or anything which the constable or authorised person reasonably believes to be alcohol; or
  • to surrender anything in their possession which is, or which the constable or authorised person reasonably believes to be, alcohol or a container for alcohol;

in any area covered by the PSPO.

Psychoactive substances

A substance produces a psychoactive effect in a person if, by stimulating or depressing the person’s central nervous system, it affects the person’s mental functioning or emotional state.

The PSPO makes it an offence to fail to comply without reasonable excuse with any requirement of a constable or authorised person;

  • to cease consumption of a psychoactive substance or anything which the constable or authorised person reasonably believes to be a psychoactive substance; or
  • to surrender anything in their possession which is, or which the constable or authorised person reasonably believes to be, a psychoactive substance or a container for a psychoactive substance;

in any area covered by the PSPO.

Urinating and defecating

The PSPO makes it an offence for a person at any time to urinate and/or defecate without reasonable excuse for doing so in any area covered by the PSPO.

Read the PSPO

Enforcement

A person guilty of an offence under the PSPO is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £500 in relation to alcohol provisions, and £1,000 in relation to all other provisions.

A fixed penalty notice may instead be issued offering the opportunity of discharging any liability to conviction for the offence by payment of the fixed penalty of £100 to the council within 14 days of issue.

Car Cruising

The proposed PSPO is designed to tackle car cruising in  public places (as defined by the Act) throughout the Borough of Scarborough (the restricted area).

A 4 week consultation was approved relating to both the types of anti-social behavior to be covered by the PSPO and the proposed area it was to cover.

On the 12th June 2018 Cabinet received a report setting out the consultation feedback together with an amended draft PSPO, which they recommended for approval. On the 2nd July 2018 Council approved the revised PSPO.

As a result the Scarborough Public Space Protection Order for Car Cruising comes into force on 9th July 2018.

The duration of the PSPO is 3 years, and at any point before expiry the Council can extend, vary or discharge it.

Area covered by the PSPO

The PSPO applies to all land:

  • which is open to the air (including land which is covered but open to the air on at least one side);
  • to which the public are entitled or permitted to have access (with or without payment); and
  • which is outlined in red on the plan below.

Read the full PSPO and view the map

What is in the council’s PSPO?

Definition of Car Cruising

‘Car Cruising’ is defined as two or more motor vehicles (including motor bikes) being on a highway or a public place, where any such vehicle or occupant of a vehicle performs any of the prohibited activities 

The “Prohibited Activities” are:

  1. causing danger or risk of injury to road users (including pedestrians);
  2. causing damage or risk of damage to property;
  3. speeding or racing;
  4. performing stunts;
  5. sounding horns or playing music so as to cause a nuisance;
  6. using foul or abusive language;
  7. using threatening or intimidating behaviour; or
  8. causing obstruction (whether moving or stationary)

 

The Offence is

  1. 1 A person who without reasonable excuse-

 

  1. Participates in Car Cruising; or
  2. promotes, organises or publicises Car Cruising (including but not limited to via email, the internet, social media, or via any publication or broadcast medium) to take place; or
  3. attends any meeting either as a vehicle owner, driver, passenger or spectator where a reasonable person would consider that Car Cruising was or is taking place;

on Land to which this Order applies commits an offence.

 

  1. A person who is guilty of an offence under this Order shall be liable on conviction at a Magistrates Court to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale (£1,000).
  2. A constable or authorised person may issue a fixed penalty notice to any person they have reason to believe has committed an offence under this Order.
  3. Where a person is issued with a fixed penalty notice under this Order, the amount of the fixed penalty shall be £100.

 

Offences and Penalty

  1. A person commits an offence if at any time and without reasonable excuse they engage in any activity prohibited by this Order.
  2. A person who is guilty of an offence under this Order shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale (£1,000).
  3. A constable or authorised person may issue a fixed penalty notice to any person they have reason to believe has committed an offence under this Order.
  4. Where a person is issued with a fixed penalty notice under this Order, the amount of the fixed penalty shall be £100.
     

Appeals

In accordance with section 66 of the Act, any interested person who wishes to challenge the validity of this order on the grounds that the Council did not have power to make the order or that a requirement under the Act has not been complied with may apply to the High Court within six weeks from the date upon which the order is made.

PLEASE NOTE – It is proposed that the PSPO will include a scheme under which certain events and activities that have been properly planned and authorised in writing by the Council can be exempted from some or all of the provisions of the PSPO.

Representations on the proposed Public Space Protection Order should be made to Sandra Rees, either in writing to Scarborough Borough Council, Town Hall, St Nicholas Street, Scarborough, and Y011 2HG or by email saferscarboroughhub@scarborough.gcsx.gov.uk