Torbay Council is asking for feedback from residents on putting in place a Public Spaces Protection Order at Hopes Nose, Torquay.
Over the years Hopes Nose, which is a recognised Site of Specific Scientific Interest (SSSI) and an important part of the English Riviera Global Geopark status, has been misused by a small minority of the population. This has resulted in vast quantities of litter being left from picnics, BBQs, campfires, camping and waste associated with angling, and has been ruining the area for everyone who uses it. This has put the site at risk of being closed to the public.
Torbay Council has been working with a range of organisations and individuals to address these issues and is proposing the introduction of a Public Spaces Protection Order under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. The order would impose certain conditions on all people who visit and use the area.
Councillor Robert Excell, Executive Lead for Community Services, said: “Consultation has already been carried out with a wide range of residents and agencies but we are keen to hear from local residents who use the land, or would like to use the land, and from any local businesses. The many types of issues taking place at Hope’s Nose are due to the behaviour of many different people and are not being perpetuated by any one person or specific group, and it would be factually inaccurate to suggest otherwise.
“Taking action against individuals has, up to now, proved challenging and in order to take any legal action, the police and the council need evidence. Securing such evidence has been difficult, mainly because Hope’s Nose is accessed by a very steep and open hill which means that people doing things they shouldn’t can see when someone is approaching and simply stop what they’re doing.
“A Public Spaces Protection Order would place a number of ‘conditions’ on the use of Hope’s Nose and anyone who then broke any of the conditions would be committing a criminal offence and breaking the law, for which they would be punishable by a Fixed Penalty Notice, an on the spot fine, or conviction at Court.”
The conditions of the Proposed Public Spaces Protection Order will include:
• No one will be permitted within this area to catch more than 20 mackerel within any 24 hour period. Any surplus mackerel must be returned to the sea immediately.
• When requested by an Authorised Officer, an individual must show all caught fish to that Officer for inspection. An Authorised Officer is an Officer from Torbay Council, Devon & Cornwall Police and Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust.
• An individual will immediately leave the area when directed to do so by an Authorised Officer, and must not return to this area within 48 hours of being told to leave.
• No camping shall be permitted at any time in this area.
• No individual shall be permitted to erect a tent, shelter, bivouac or anything of a similar nature within this area.
• No individual shall drop, deposit or leave any form of litter or waste within the area.
• No individual shall be permitted to light a fire, barbeque or anything of a similar nature within the area.
• No individual shall be permitted to be associated with a fire, barbeque or anything of a similar nature within this area.
• No individual shall intimidate, obstruct or interfere with another individual’s enjoyment of this area.
To see more information on the conditions of the proposed Public Spaces Protection Order and to provide feedback please visit: www.torbay.gov.uk/hopesnose