New policy to tackle St Helens town centre crime and disorder

Westfield Street in St Helens town centre
Westfield Street in St Helens town centre
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A new policy aimed at tackling crime and disorder in the night-time economy has been approved by St Helens Council.

A public consultation on the adoption of the council’s updated Statement of Licensing Policy 2019-2024, which includes the introduction of a Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA), took place in 2018.

The CIA, which will be adopted for a three-year period, has been described by the council’s head of place and delivery Roy Benyon as a “strategic tool” that will assist town centre development.

CIAs can help limit the number or type of licensing applications granted in areas where there is evidence that the number or density of licensed premised is having a cumulative impact and leading to problems that are undermining the licensing objectives.

A similar policy was approved for Westfield Street and Ormskirk Street in January 2016 in an effort to limit the existing number of “vertical” bars.

However, the new CIA will cover the whole of the town centre ward and any application that intends to sell alcohol.

A key aim of the CIA, which was put out for a public consultation last year, is to prevent crime and disorder.

There were 121 acts of crime and anti-social behaviour recorded by the police in the town centre between April 2016 to March 2018.

Merseyside Police has previously given its backing to the CIA, with St Helens area commander Louise Harrison saying it will improve community safety.

Full council approved the adoption of both the Statement of Licensing Policy 2019-2024 and the CIA 2019-2022 following a vote.