Traffic ban has warm welcome
A TRAFFIC ban to cut drunken crime on Barnsley's booze alley have been hailed a success by police, the council and bouncers.
Temporary bollards are being used to close Wellington Street, which has a host of pubs, bars and clubs, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.
Chf Supt Andy Brooke said: “It’s too early to say if there’s going to be a big reduction in violent crime but the first weekend went really well.”
The ban will run for a six-month trial period after which it may be made permanent. It was introduced following a string of incidents involving hordes of revellers who spill from narrow pavements on to the road.
James Marshall, owner of Secur-all Ltd which has 17 door staff working on Wellington Street, welcomed the closure saying it made their job easier.
He added: “When you are dealing with an incident you are conscious you have got people in a street where traffic is coming down. If you eject someone and are talking to them outside more often than not they will stand in the road.
“The extra space means people have more freedom to move about and are not bumping into each other on the pavement which might cause tension when they have had a few drinks. Comments I have had from the public are that it is a good idea and makes it a lot better.”
Police have also used new powers to ban at least two troublemakers from the town centre.
Officers tackled revellers who they believed were about to commit a violent or public order offence and the would-be offenders were given a map clearly showing the areas from which they were temporarily banned and when they could legally return.
It is the first time officers have used the powers introduced under the Violent Crime Reduction Act, which became law in August.
Chf Supt Brooke added: “It has been a good start.”