Alcohol Ban to be Considered for Hot Spots in Scarborough Town Centre

A total or partial ban of alcohol drinking in ‘hot spots’ in the streets of Scarborough town centre could be brought into place.

North Yorkshire Council is considering making a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in Scarborough, in relation to alcohol consumption in public places. 

The authority is asking local people for their views on two possible proposals as well as whether public urination and defecation should also be the subject of a PSPO making it easier for offenders to be fined.

PSPO’s are designed to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in an area which is having a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the community.  In the three years to January 2024, North Yorkshire Police dealt with 1,191 incidents of anti-social behaviour linked to alcohol in Scarborough – with 67 per cent of them in the town centre area.

A previous PSPO for a designated area of the town expired in 2023 and although it was not a blanket ban on drinking in public places, the restrictions were linked to anti-social behaviour or the potential for it.

North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for stronger communities, Cllr David Chance, said: “We believe these statistics indicate the need for a tougher approach to deal with the issue.  

“Over the past few years, we have had constant complaints from Scarborough residents relating to anti-social behaviour in the town centre, which has become a hot spot for incidents.  The previous PSPO expired last year, and we now want to bring in more rigorous restrictions.”

The council is asking for views on two proposals – either to place restrictions on drinking alcohol in the street, or to ban drinking of alcohol in the street entirely, within a designated (hot spot) area regardless of whether there is associated anti-social behaviour.

Neither proposal would apply to the consumption of alcohol on licensed premises – if a restaurant with outdoor seating is licensed to sell alcohol, the outdoor area would not be subject to a PSPO.

When a PSPO is in place in an area, alcohol consumption in that area only becomes a criminal offence if someone refuses to stop drinking, or to hand over alcohol, when they are asked to do so by a police officer, police community support officer or an authorised council officer. 

To put a PSPO in place in an area, the council must be satisfied that:

  • The activities covered by any order have been carried on in a public place within the council’s area and that they have had a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality.
  • The effect, or likely effect, of the activities is persistent and unreasonable and  justifies the restrictions imposed by the PSPO.

If someone breaches the PSPO a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) of up to £100 can be issued.

To take part in the consultation – which runs from March 20 to May 1 can be accessed at

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