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Last Updated: Wednesday, 29 September, 2004, 12:44 GMT 13:44 UK
Picnic tipples survive beach ban
Yob culture
Residents' lives have been made a misery by rowdy behaviour
Licensing chiefs want to take action to prevent drunken revellers causing problems on north Cornwall's beaches.

They plan to extend the number of areas where people can be ordered to stop drinking to include some beaches in Newquay and St Austell.

But they say family holidaymakers who want to enjoy a tipple during a picnic will not be affected by the crackdown.

So-called "Alcohol-free zones" are already in operation across some streets in Newquay.

They say visitors will only be stopped from drinking if a police officer orders them to hand over their alcohol.

Restormel Borough Council's licensing team hope the plans will make the areas more friendly for visitors.

They are proposing the zones be extended after public and police concerns about nuisance caused by drinking.

The plans are for the zones to run from 2000 BST to 1000 BST.

An offence is only committed if they continue to consume alcohol after being warned not to by a police officer
Sue Leath, licensing officer

Sue Leath, licensing officer, said: "We are proposing to target those areas where there is some evidence of nuisance or disorder associated with the consumption of alcohol.

"Three beaches are being proposed for designation with a time limit of 8pm to 10am the following morning.

"An offence is only committed if they continue to consume alcohol after being warned not to by a police officer.

"It is in the jurisdiction of the police and it does give some flexibility. What we are trying to do is make the area more friendly and deal with any anti-social element, making the town better for visitors."

She added organised events would also not be affected by the move.

Fistral Beach, Newquay
We must kerb that nuisance and create something for those who are going to respect everyone else
Paul Wright, tourism officer

In Newquay this summer officers confiscated alcohol from more than 2,000 people who were drinking in the existing zones.

Police said they had been powerless to prevent people from continuing drinking on the street and beaches after pubs and clubs closed.

The plans are to control drinking in areas in St Austell, Newquay, Bugle, St Stephen, St Dennis, Indian Queens and other surrounding villages.

The list includes most of the beaches in Newquay, Par, Porthpean as well as Poltair Football Ground.

But Paul Wright, the area's tourism officer says it must be well managed rather than "dictatorial" and he hoped they could identify other areas for people to go.

"What's got to happen is a proper balanced approach. We have people of all ages here and we must identify what they require and provide facilities rather than just hope it goes away," he said.

"There is a minority who spoil it for the vast majority and we must kerb that nuisance and create something for those who are going to respect everyone else.

"Beach parties have been going on forever on the Cornish coast and they will continue. It is about getting it into perspective rather than becoming a dictatorial state."

Councillors will make a decision on the proposals on Wednesday.

SOS bus to rescue binge drinkers
18 Mar 04  |  Cornwall
Police raise rowdiness fear
13 Oct 03  |  Cornwall
Alcohol ban plan for beach
24 Sep 03  |  Cornwall

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