Nearly 50 penalties given for littering and cycling offences last week

Nearly 50 fixed penalty notices were issued in Grimsby town centre last week, including 13 for cycling in the pedestrian area, on Friday morning alone.

Enforcement officers working on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council spent two hours in Victoria Street on Friday morning targeting cyclists in breach of the new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO).

Litter, including cigarette butts, is bad for the environment and can cause serious harm to wildlife, especially creatures living in the River Freshney.

Councillor Ron Shepherd, cabinet member for Safer and Stronger Communities, said: “People have told us they want to see more enforcement and have welcomed the fining of litter louts.

“If you don’t want to be fined, don’t drop litter, it’s that simple. There’s no excuse for it.

“David Attenborough has made people more aware of the harm caused by littering through TV shows such as Blue Planet, we all need to take more care of the environment and that starts with looking after our hometown.”

Local business owner Jonathan Hewitt, of G. Hewitt and Son, said: “The new measures are already making a difference. Shoppers in Victoria Street welcome it and are thanking them.

“It’s the best thing that’s happened in a long while. I’ve seen older people going up to them [enforcement officers] and telling them ‘well done’.”

Dropped rubbish can find its way into the River Freshney and can put swans and other wildlife at risk.

By showing more consideration and putting litter in the bin or taking it home, people can make a real difference to our environment and avoid risking a fine.

Neil Clark, strategic lead for Regulatory Services, said: “Most people would rather not see rubbish everywhere and would prefer their town to be clean and free from litter.

“The point of this kind of enforcement is to stop people dropping litter and to protect the environment.

“Our enforcement officers are actively working to protect the place we live. It all helps create a borough that is somewhere people want to live, work, visit and invest.”

The PSPO came into effect earlier this year following a public consultation, and includes littering, dog control offences and antisocial behaviour.

As of the end of July, 1,149 fixed penalty notices – including 1,124 for littering and 23 for dog fouling – had been issued since enforcement began in November 2018.

For the first two weeks of August, 62 FPNs have been handed out, including 37 for littering and 25 for cycling on Victoria Street.

PSPOs are legal tools which give police and council officers the power to warn people who are behaving in an anti-social manner.

A fixed penalty notice may be issued to a person who breaches a PSPO, giving them an opportunity to avoid prosecution by paying a fixed penalty of up to £100.

Anyone found guilty of an offence in the Magistrates’ Court is liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding level three on the court’s standard scale of fines (currently £1,000).

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