North East Lincolnshire Council issued more than 1,700 fines in 2020 for litter, cycling and dog control offences.
A total of 1,245 fixed penalty notices were given for littering, 145 for dog fouling and dog control offences, and 311 for cycling in the pedestrian area in Victoria Street, Grimsby.
Fixed penalty notices are an alternative to prosecution and allows 14 days to pay. Anyone who chooses not to pay a fine can be taken to court and prosecuted for the original offence.
The Council took 45 individuals to court for failing to pay fixed penalty fines for cycling and another 110 who did not pay fines for littering.
On average, offenders came away with court bills of £339 for littering and £400 for cycling in the pedestrian zone.
In most cases, these penalties are much higher than the £100 fines initially given for the offences.
Councillor Ron Shepherd, cabinet member for Safer and Stronger Communities at North East Lincolnshire Council, said:
“We want our streets, parks and beaches to be clean, safe and attractive places for people to enjoy. If you choose to drop litter, leave dog mess on the floor, or worry shoppers by cycling in the pedestrian zone, we will fine you.
“Most people know litter goes in a bin and most dog owners take responsibility for their pets, but a small minority don’t.
“Enforcement patrols are here to protect the environment and act as a deterrent to litter louts, irresponsible dog owners and those who put others at risk by cycling in the town centre.
“They’ve had to adapt the way they work because of the pandemic yet maintain a helpful presence on the streets and help keep the area tidy.
“When the Council consulted the public about environmental offences such as litter and dog fouling, the overwhelming majority said they wanted to see tougher enforcement.
“We listen to what people tell us and these statistics show we are taking action against those who choose to mess up our area.”
Dog control PSPOs
A borough-wide Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) covers not picking up dog mess, not carrying the means to pick up after your dog and to put your dog on a lead when told to do so by an authorised officer.
There are also PSPOs for specific areas with conditions that exclude dogs from play areas and keeping dogs on leads during organised events.
The Council is also reminding dog walkers to avoid the main tourist beach in Cleethorpes from Good Friday.
Dogs are not allowed on the beach between Cleethorpes Leisure Centre and Wonderland from Good Friday to 30 September. Enforcement officers will patrol the area and fine people who take their dogs on the beach.
North East Lincolnshire Council started working with Doncaster Council to introduce private patrols for litter and dog fouling in November 2018. Officers from Local Authority Support carry out patrols and gather evidence, which is passed on to Doncaster Council who issue the fixed penalties on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council.
Early in 2019, officers enforced against other dog control offences covered by a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO). Officers also started fining people for cycling in the pedestrian zone in Grimsby town centre in July 2019.
North East Lincolnshire Council heard from people in 2017 who said they wanted to see more enforcement against people spoiling the borough. In response to the question, ‘Would you support a more robust, zero tolerance approach on litter, fly-tipping and dog fouling?’ Out of 2,955 who answered, 87 per cent said yes.
In a dog control PSPO survey carried out earlier this year, 99 per cent of 428 respondents said public places should be safe and free from dog mess.