[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Friday, 23 May, 2003, 15:48 GMT 16:48 UK
Booze ban for street drinkers
Castle Square, Caernarfon
Caernarfon has seen a spate of violent attacks
Alcohol-free zones are being considered in a town which hit the headlines after a spate of violent late-night attacks earlier this year.

A group in Caernarfon is continuing the fight against anti-social behaviour by putting forward proposals to introduce a booze ban on some streets in the town centre.

The scheme, which is part of the Gwynedd Crime and Disorder Strategy, could be in place by August.

Police will be allowed to confiscate alcohol from anyone deemed to be creating a nuisance in these zones.

Gwynedd council's community safety facilitator, Eira Hughes, said the aim was to control drinking in public places.

Nuisance

"It will not mean a complete ban on drinking in the open air. Pubs with sitting areas outside will not be affected.

"But it will mean that anyone creating a nuisance in the town centre will be stopped."

The rules could be extended to include Bangor and a similar scheme is already in operation in Rhyl.

It is not to stop people drinking at tables outside, but to stop people walking from one pub to the other with glasses and bottles
Pc Ian Williams

Under the changes police will be able to arrest drinkers who refuse to hand over their bottles or cans when asked to.

The alcohol-free zones would include from the Safeway store on Bangor Road to the town centre, Castle Square, Pool Street and up as far as Snowdon Street.

"We have had problems with people drinking on the square," said Ms Hughes.

"But it is not only the 'yobs' that some people have written about - some are people in their 40s and 50s," she added.

The Arfon sub-committee of Gwynedd council has approved the proposals which will now go to the Secretary of State for final approval.

Ms Hughes expects the rules to be in place by the beginning of August.

Pub watch

Pc Ian Williams from North Wales Police, said the aim was to stop nuisance.

"It is not to stop people drinking at tables outside pubs, but to stop people walking from one pub to the other with glasses and bottles, which can be dangerous," he said.

"We are also working with pub landlords who run a pub watch scheme in place."

He said the clamp down was happening as a result of an increase in the number of arrests over Christmas time.

"Because of that, Caernarfon gained a bad reputation but things have improved now after concentrated efforts in the town," he added.

Plans to establish a Guardian Angels group in the town revealed by BBC Wales current affairs programme, Taro Naw, in April seem to have fizzled out.

Gilly Harradence, manager of Cofi Roc night club, who had initially been involved in the discussions said that she had not heard anything about the plans for weeks.

Other steps to deter violence and anti-social behaviour include installing CCTV cameras in the Peblig Estate which has recently seen similar violence problems.


SEE ALSO:
Guardian Angels patrol Caernarfon
16 Apr 03  |  North West Wales
CCTV system dubbed ineffective
07 Feb 03  |  Wales
Time called on street drinkers
20 Aug 02  |  England
Glass bottle 'ban' to combat vandalism
19 May 03  |  Beds/Bucks/Herts


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific