Peckham Residents' Network

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police plea for help in reducing off licenses & betting shops in Peckham

The local police want our help to reduce the numbers of off-licenses and betting shops given permission to operate in Peckham, because they prey on the vulnerable in a time of economic hardship. Sgt Emma Dickinson of The Lane Safer Neighbourhood Team asks us to email her our opinions, our experiences in the area and any complaints. Email her at emma.hart@met.police.uk.

These can relate to specific premises or the general area, or both but include as much information as possible. Please highlight if these issues affect you regularly, daily etc and how they impact on your ability to enjoy the local environment. E.g. drunks in the park being abusive, aggressive beggars under the influence, premises selling to people already drunk, urination in public related to these premises, blocking pavements (i.e. to smoke), abusive drunks scaring customers or children &&&

The police have been told that the Licensing Committee do not get many objections or complaints, therefore the police would appreciate your assistance in highlighting these issues to them.
________________________________________________________

Further information from Sgt Emma Dickinson of the local Lane ward police:

At the last Lane Safer Neighbourhood ward panel meeting we had a number of complaints regarding the high number of off licenses and betting shops in the area.

These cause us massive policing issues and directly correlate with the number of complaints of anti-social behaviour, begging, urinating in the street, drunken fighting, public order, prostitution and general blocking of pavements, noise disturbance and also a general impact of the local
environment which affects trade to the area and the local image.

Peckham has been designated a saturation zone due to the high concentration of licensed premises in the area for the last four years, yet new licenses and extensions continue to be issued.

I am in the process of approaching the council to highlight these issues relating to licensed premises. I will be collating information to present to them highlighting the social issues and conflict of these types of premises cause in the area, especially in a time of recession where by people are
more susceptible to gambling and alcoholism. I will also include the complaints that have been received regarding on the impact on trade in the area and also the determent to the local community due to the local environment being affected by the associated issues.

I will be looking to ask the council licensing committee to:

– Cease the issuing of any further off licenses and gambling licenses.

– Ensure that there is proper consultation with the local community i.e. formal notification to all local neighbours and also general notification.

– Provision of legal representation on behalf of the local community to allow a fair hearing when faced with barristers employed by large companies.

– Provide more resources to enforce the licenses already in existence.

– To address and consider the wider social issues already present in the local area and the cost of policing, NHS and social services for every application.

– To prohibit the sale of strong alcohol and single cans, which includes all licensed premises already in existence.

Ipswich town centre has reported a 50% reduction in crime and ASB following a ban of off license strong alcohol sales. Reading have also reported similar results. Plymouth and Northamptonshire police and local councils are also calling for similar measures.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/9971418/Shop-ban-on-high-strength-booze-cuts-street-drinking-crime-by-50.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-20039814
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-northamptonshire-22094183

Peckham is a diverse and fantastic area. There is due to be a lot of regeneration in the area which will hopefully give us a great boost. We have to recognise though that we are still recognised as a very deprived area. Due to this I feel we should not be encouraging these types of premises into the area as they prey on the vulnerable in a time of economic hardship.

Please pass this on to anyone else you feel may be interested in this.

Many Thanks,

Emma Dickinson
PS 109 MD
The Lane SNT
Work:- 0207 -161- 8324
Mobile:- 07766442999
Email: emma.hart@met.police.uk

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