Street drinkers move on after metal studs are placed on wall
METAL studs put on a wall outside a Derby garage are helping to keep street drinkers away from the area, according to police.
The spikes were put along a low wall outside Rinkway (Mr Tyre), on the corner of Normanton Road and Hartington Street, in September after reports of anti-social behaviour.
Since then, the majority of street drinkers have dispersed and moved away from outside, although police are still having to tackle the problem on a daily basis.
Ian Reid, area manager for Mr Tyre, which owns Rinkway, said: "It has been a great success and we think there has been a 90 per cent reduction in the number of street drinkers congregating outside our premises at various times.
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"The workers there were having to clear up outside each morning from where these people had thrown empty drink cans and rubbish.
"But this isn't happening now, which we are really pleased about."
PC Carl Anderson is part of the on-going Operation Gershwin, which was set up to tackle street drinking in Normanton.
He said: "We probably have a hard core of somewhere between 10 and 15 offenders who we are still dealing with most days in the area.
"We have a variety of methods put in place to tackle them which are working and generally we are seeing fewer of them.
"The studs that Rinkway put up have moved them away from outside which has been a great success for them.
"But these people will move on to other areas and we are constantly looking at ways in which to combat the anti-social behaviour that follows them around."
PC Anderson said one group they were dealing with is a gang of six homeless Polish street drinkers who gather in the area and sleep rough, often in Arboretum Park.
He said: "They do not generally cause that much trouble to us or the local people so in their case it is more about speaking to them and educating them about what they can and cannot do.
"But others come into the area from other parts of Derby as their friends still live here in Normanton."
A designated public protection order was earlier this year put in place in parts of Normanton.
This bans people from drinking alcohol in the street.
A Section 30 dispersal order was also granted which means officers can confiscate booze from street drinkers and force them to move out of the area.
And now officers involved in Operation Gershwin have eight anti-social behaviour order requests put in on street drinkers which would ban them from the area should magistrates grant them.
Inspector Richard Keene, who is in charge of policing in the area, said: "Tackling street drinking and the associated anti-social behaviour it brings with it is one of our main priorities and we will not tolerate any behaviour that makes people who live and work in the area feel uncomfortable or threatened in any way at all.
"We want to reassure the public we are tackling this problem."