Enforcement of a Public Open Spaces Protection Order, introduced to tackle antisocial behaviour at an industrial estate at Leeming Bar, should be stepped up, a review has concluded.
A meeting of Hambleton District Council’s cabinet will hear issues of littering, human waste, dangerous parking and noise pollution are still prevalent, some two years after the order was introduced to deter overnight lorry parking in the area.
The order has seen the council empowered to fine anyone staying overnight in vehicles on the industrial estate, which is home to firms such as soft drinks giant Cawingredients, R&R Ice Cream and leading pork pie manufacturer Vale of Mowbray.
A detailed review of the order, using data from the security company employed to patrol the order zone has revealed a sharp decline in the number of leaflets being issued.
However, despite calls from residents for the council to adopt a tough stance over antisocial behaviour only five Fixed Penalty Notices, where individuals can be fined up to £100, were issued between May 2019 and November 2021 to drivers who repeatedly ignored the order.
A report to the cabinet highlights the council’s policy has been to issue warnings and educational leaflets for a first breach of the order and a fine if there is a repeated breach in the following six months of a leaflet being issued.
It has been proposed to the cabinet that the warning leaflets approach will cease and any person who has breached the order will be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice with immediate effect.
In addition, the council will consider extending the order until March 2025 and in to deliver an effective enforcement regime it is proposed that a budget of £9,790 is provided.
Ward councillor Mike Barningham said some lorry drivers were continuing to park overnight and throw rubbish, including bottles of urine, from their wagons, leaving volunteers with the grim task of picking up the litter.
He said: “It is a better situation than previously, but I know some local residents consider it hasn’t been implemented hard enough as the council initially went on a softly softy approach to educate people not to park there.
“It is right that now we’ve had more than a year of the enforcement notices being there that we should pursue those that break the regulations a bit harder.”