Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Council Chamber - Muriel Matters House, Breeds Place, Hastings TN34 3UY. View directions
Contact: Cherry Longley 01424 451430 or email email@example.com
Items No. Item
Matters arising under Matters Arising listed on page 1:
Shoplifting: Noted that various people have moved on from this town and others are coming to the forefront. John Bownas advised that some businesses believe it to be ineffective trying to deal with persistent shoplifters; reclaiming the stolen goods is mainly their aim. Mike felt that this is really a matter for the Police and the businesses involved. Agreed that Aidan and John Bownas discuss further. Action Aidan Cornwall/John Bownas This group agreed at the last meeting to focus on a small number of persons who are street drinkers associated with ASB.
Food hand-outs, outside Debenhams plc: John Bownas advised that he has been unable to progress this due to various other work/personal commitments and will report back to a future meeting. Action John Bownas
Bob Brown, HBC Licensing Manager presented his briefing note, circulated with the agenda. Bob/Police have developed a joint plan and strategy to tackle alcohol licensing issues. Evidence obtained identifies 5 town centre off-licences as the main source of alcohol to the street drinkers (they are all in the Reduce the Strength scheme).
Corner shop, Cambridge Road
Costcutter, Harold Place
News and Wine, Queens Road
Food City, Wellington Place
Convenience Store, Breeds Place. Noted that this licence has lapsed and the shop has changed hans; currently there are no alcohol sales. The new owner/manager, who has experience in this type of store, is currently liaising with HBC licensing team.
The 4 remaining off-licences will receive joint visits in the near future (reminding of responsibilities, checking stock etc, serving notices where necessary). The visits will then be rolled out over the borough during the following weeks.
Regarding the Reduce the Strength scheme, noted that this is voluntary and does not appear on premises licences. Owners/managers can voluntarily add conditions to their own licences – the cost is £89. Otherwise the authority requires good evidence to review any licences. Chris advised that if the scheme appears as a condition on the licence then it is a stronger factor related to obtaining evidence. She will review any evidence received prior to starting any legal process.
John Bownas advised that Shopwatch can help hand out identification sheets/photos to aid the off-licences in not selling to known offenders. Aidan advised that the Police issued some warning letters in the past to every off-licence in town and plan to carry out that exercise again. John Bownas will speak to businesses (as part of BCRP) and place the offender listing on the DISC website. John requires latest data for up to date images of offencers. John to also send these to Paul and Chris. Action John Bownas
The wardens will also monitor as far as possible. The review will be police-led all offences must be reported to the Police. Action John Bownas / Aidan Cornwall / Paul Cosson (wardens)
The group felt that expanding the Reduce the Strength scheme would be a positive way forward and Mike agreed to waive the fee. Action Bob Brown
Regarding the possibility of using ‘smart water’ or CCTV, Bob advised that smart water marked items could possibly be sold on and would be hard to trace back to the vendor. CCTV is subject to many regulations (RIPA) etc., so the use of this system would need careful thought.
Identified Hotspots - Update
Wellington Square: Resident Trevor Berry continues to send almost daily emails. Mike advised that it will be impossible to achieve a zero tolerance at this location. Persons around the table reported fewer episodes post the introduction of the new PSPO. Marga advised that generally there are fewer larger groups and if spoken to they usually leave the location. Paul commented that most evenings the CCTV surveillance indicates the area is clear. John Bownas concurred that the area is less populated by the street drinking group/s. Noted that there was one largish group on the Carnival weekend Sunday.
Bus Shelters, Carlisle Parade and Sunken Gardens, Robertson Street: Paul and Marga advised that there are no drinkers and the areas are mostly occupied by foreign students. John Bownas confirmed there has been no adverse feedback from the local hotels there (i.e. the ones who complained initially).
Noted that there remains some ‘hard core’ drinkers ‘floating’ around locations in the town centre. One person (John Lowe) demonstrated violent behaviour towards a PCSO.
Lower Queens Road: Following the monitoring exercise there appears to be only occasional incidences. However, another noted location is outside the cycle shop in Harold Place.
The Roundel: Again this sees less activity.
Central St. Leonards: Paul advised that the wardens undertook some patrolling but had nothing to report; this could be associated with the timing of the patrols. Aidan advised he will organise some Police patrols to visit and discuss with businesses. Action Aidan Cornwall John Whittington confirmed he would also chase his contacts for any further information. Action John Whittington
Aggressive Begging: Paul advised that his team has noticed more incidences of aggressive begging – notably the High Street and Breeds Place. This could be part of an ‘organised begging’ scheme. Police and Warden & BID Manager will try to ascertain further information and where the ‘beggars’ are being dropped off . Action Paul Cosson/Aidan Cornwall/John Bownas John Whittington suggested that the Discovery Team would also be interested in this. Action John Whittington
Marga will forward photographs she has to Aidan. Action Marga Fernandez-Muriana
Enforcement / Legal Action - Update
HBC Constitution: Chris advised that she found no issues with this document.
Enforcement Policy: Chris felt that this document probably requires some revision. Agreed that Chris will read and provide tracked changes and send to Mike for further consideration. Action Christine Barkshire Jones / Mike Hepworth
Legal Action: Rob advised that a prosecution is now ready for one street drinker (Chris Kirwen). There are also 3 possession claims for caravans and shelters in Sea Road, however there is also 1 new caravan occupant. Agreed that Marga will provide Rob with extra evidence obtained by the Wardens regarding breaches of CPNs). Action Marga Fernandez-Muriana
Paul advised that Rob Lowe has yet to be served any warnings; the man is hard to approach, and deemed to be violent. There were 5 different people refusing to hand over drink which is a breach of the PSPO so once all statements have been completed these will be handed to HBC Legal. Paul further advised that there have been no further issues to date with others that the teams were targeting.
Information Sharing - Update
Information/Data Sharing: Chris advised that she had received two new policies from different Sussex authorities, however she still needs to locate the original existing agreement between the Police/HBC. Aidan advised he had a copy. Action Aidan Cornall to send copy to Christine Barkshire Jones
Blue Light Project & Street Community Project Worker - Update
As discussed at the last meeting, the group is keen for partners from the health and social care sector to identify a way of proactively working with the street drinkers that will reduce the need for continued enforcement or a more effective way of addressing the issue. Two best practice providers have been identified, Arun/Worthing (re a Key Street Community Outreach Worker) and Alcohol Change UK (re the Blue Light Project).
It is believed that the best forum to share this information will be at the next meeting of the Joint Safer Hastings & Rother Partnership Board scheduled for Monday, 23rd September 2019. A presentation regarding the Assertive Outreach Services initiative will be made by Georgina Bouette, Arun District Council. Unfortunately Mike Ward, Senior Consultant Alcohol Change UK is unable to attend on that date. Mike commented that he had also invited Samantha Williams, Assistant Director, Strategy, Commissioning & Supply Management, East Sussex County Council.
Update: Samantha Williams is no longer the appropriate officer to attend. Tom Hook has accepted an invite to attend the SR&SH Partnership Board – Tom is responsible for community safety – his title is Assistant Director, Planning, Performance and Engagement, Adult Social Care.
Any Other Business
ASB Public Summit – Amber Rudd MP: Mike advised that following the tour with business owners recently, Amber Rudd would like to follow-up with a public meeting to discuss the progress being made and any further action the businesses running from Carlisle Parade to Robertson Terrace would like to be taken to ensure the problems associated with anti-social behaviour are reduced/eliminated.
The public meeting will take place on Friday 6 September at His Place Community Church, Robertson Street, Hastings TN34 1HT @ 1830hrs.
Simon Hubbard, Director, and John Whittington are attending for HBC, Aidan advised the Police will also be represented. Mike commented that it would be beneficial to present a positive picture and highlight some of the work this group has carried out. Mike has briefed Simon/John to that effect.
Date of Next Meeting (Thursday, 12th September 2019 @ 12 noon)
Thursday, 12th September @ 1200-1300hrs, Tressell (3rd floor)
Remainder of schedule:
Tuesday, 24th September @ 1400-1500hrs, Tressell (3rd floor)
Monday, 7th October @ 1130-1230hrs, Committee Room 1 (UG floor)
Venue: Tressell Room, 3rd floor, Muriel Matters House.
Meeting closed: 1305hrs