New rules to tackle alcohol-related anti-social behaviour by preventing street drinking in Aberdare and Pontypridd have been in force for two months – and feedback received by the Council suggests they are working.

And, with November fast-approaching it means the autumn internationals are almost here – and the Council would like to remind residents that the new rules will still apply during the upcoming Wales rugby days.

In September, a new Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) came into force, introducing ‘no alcohol zones’ in Aberdare and Pontypridd Town Centres and specified surrounding areas – in order to tackle alcohol-related anti-social behaviour. Promoted by the Calling Time on Street Drinking campaign and #AlcoholFreeStreets on social media, the new rules followed a focused engagement campaign with residents, which ran throughout August.

Since September 1, no person stopped by either Council or Police enforcement officers – for drinking alcohol within the zones – has refused to dispose of their drink. The Council would much rather this than issuing a £100 Fixed Penalty Notice, while excellent feedback has also been received by the Council from local businesses in Aberdare and Pontypridd.

Joint patrols continue between the Council and South Wales Police, while promotion of the PSPO continues in and around the Town Centres – including signage, advertising on public transport, beer mats delivered to all licensed premises within the ‘no-alcohol zones’, and leaflets to all business premises. The Calling Time on Street Drinking logo has also been given to local taxi drivers working in Aberdare and Pontypridd, to place visibly in their vehicles.

Following its success in Porth, the Council has now implemented its second Community Alcohol Partnership (CAP), in Pontypridd, which develops a culture where both adults and young people drink responsibly. Through CAP, funding has been secured to support a youth club provision at Ynysangharad Park, which is attended by a significant number of young people each week.

Meanwhile, Wales play their latest international rugby fixtures on consecutive Saturdays this autumn – at the Principality Stadium. These are on November 3 (versus Scotland), November 10 (Australia), November 17 (Tonga) and November 24 (South Africa). Residents are reminded that the new PSPO will continue to be enforced on these days.

Councillor Rhys Lewis, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities, Well-being and Cultural Services, said: “The Council introduced the new PSPO last month to tackle alcohol-related anti-social behaviour, with a focus on creating alcohol-free streets in Aberdare and Pontypridd. The PSPO was put forward following feedback from the 2016/17 crime perception survey, as part of the RCT Community Safety Partnership.

“One of the considerations of the PSPO was the potential for an increase in alcohol-related anti-social behaviour when the Town Centres are busier than normal and there is greater demand for public transport – for instance, on international rugby days. The PSPO will continue to be enforced during the upcoming autumn internationals, so everyone can enjoy each occasion.

“The Council continues to work closely with local businesses and the wider community to enforce the new PSPO alongside South Wales Police, and will continue to promote the new rules through its Calling Time on Street Drinking campaign. It is encouraging that initial feedback from businesses in Aberdare and Pontypridd suggests the new rules are working, and that they have seen a difference since the changes were made on September 1.”

Posted on Wednesday 14th November 2018

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