More anti-social behaviour

A temporary parking ban is being enforced near a popular beauty spot in Saltford as part of measures by Bath & North East Somerset Council and Avon & Somerset Police to tackle anti-social behaviour as the lockdown eases.

Cones have been put out along The Shallows, along the narrowest sections of the road where people have been parking inconsiderately. Police have been patrolling the area and penalty notices have been handed out to vehicles for obstruction of footways and the carriageway.

Due to the large numbers of cars blocking the road near the popular beauty spot, the council issued an emergency temporary traffic regulation notice (TTRN) on Friday (June 26).

Councillor Paul Crossley, cabinet member for Communities, said: “The easing of lockdown is causing significant issues for local authorities and the police across the country, we only have to look at what has happened in Bournemouth recently to see the scale of the problem.

“Locally we are having to deal with very large groups of people gathering in our parks, many are not following social distancing rules and they are leaving huge amounts of litter. We are also seeing inconsiderate parking in parts of Saltford and near Warleigh Weir.

‘We are working with the police and have put in a temporary parking ban along The Shallows, police are also patrolling Royal Victoria Park and our teams are working hard to clear up the additional litter with support from volunteers, but this is putting a huge strain on already stretched services. While we welcome the easing of the lockdown to help our businesses it does not mean the coronavirus has gone away and we do not want to see a local outbreak because of this kind of behaviour.”

Inspector Gavin Usher, Avon and Somerset Police, said: “We’ve been responding to concerns over gatherings in parks and open spaces as well as reports of anti-social behaviour, including littering and use of drugs and alcohol.

“We’ve listened to residents and have increased our patrols in problem areas and we’re working closely with the local authority.

“We’re also using all the powers available to us, including dispersal orders, to tackle these issues and are keeping residents updated.

“It’s important people continue to follow the guidance and restrictions relating to COVID-19. It’s a deadly disease and the risks it poses to public health have not gone away.”

Councillor Duncan Hounsell (Lib Dem, Saltford ward) added:

“The Shallows riverside area has been under enormous pressure from the influx of visitors. As a Saltford ward councillor, I am pleased that this Liberal Democrat B&NES administration has responded so decisively and introduced an emergency parking ban along the whole stretch of The Shallows. This will ease traffic congestion and ensure that social distancing for pedestrians is possible, thus helping to protect public health.”