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New curbs on activities that could damage parkland and protected coastline come into force in April

2:12 pm, Friday, 31st March 2023 - 1 year ago

Environment and community safety

North East Lincolnshire Council is introducing a new public space protection order (PSPO) from Saturday 1 April.

As reported, the new PSPO allows the Council to place restrictions in specific areas to curb behaviour that could be detrimental to the environment and people’s quality of life.

The restrictions cover parks, beaches, woodland, the sea front and other council land.

New signs carrying details about the restrictions will be put up at key locations in Cleethorpes and parks and woodland in North East Lincolnshire.

Many of the activities covered by the proposed PSPO could result in damage to parkland or could harm the protected environmental habitat along the coast or put wildlife at risk.

Some of the activities are covered by existing national legislation and local bylaws, but introducing a PSPO gives the Council a fresh approach to enforcement.

The new PSPO restricts activities on council land such as fires and barbecues, unauthorised caravanning and camping, paragliders, metal detecting without prior approval, jet skiing too close to other people and wildlife and releasing sky lanterns. Restrictions also apply to fishing in some council lakes and ponds and to bait digging without a permit.

Enforcement under the PSPO starts on Saturday 1 April. Officers already patrol regularly for littering and dog control offences, now they will enforce against the other PSPO violations.

Initially, enforcement officers will offer advice to anyone found to be breaching the new PSPO rather than issuing fines. However, fixed penalty notices will be given from 1 May 2023. All officers wear uniform and carry an identification card.

Full details about the PSPO will be posted online at

A North East Lincolnshire Council spokesperson said: “Cleethorpes beach and the rest of our coastline is part of the wider Humber Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

“The area has been designated as an SSSI by Natural England due to the importance of the Humber Estuary for internationally significant numbers of migrating birds. Natural England impose restrictions on certain activities within the SSSI.

“As the authority responsible for the SSSI within our borough, we must put in place measures to manage any potential damage or disturbance to the site.

“Introducing a Public Space Protection Order gives us the ability to manage and enforce against activities that could harm this protected natural habitat and avoid any detrimental impact on the quality of life of those in the area.

“Protecting this internationally important habitat, along with our parks and woodlands, is something we take seriously with our ambition to improve the area’s unique natural environment for the benefit of everyone.”

The existing beach dog ban comes into force on Good Friday, 7 April. Dogs are banned from the main beach from Good Friday to 30 September.

What is a PSPO?

The Council can make a PSPO on any public space within the area if it is satisfied that the activities carried out, or likely to be carried out, in a public space:

have had, or are likely to have, a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality

  • is, or is likely to be, persistent or continuing in nature
  • is, or is likely to be, unreasonable
  • justifies the restrictions imposed

The PSPO can prohibit people from doing certain things in an area, requires specified things to be done by persons carrying on specified activities in an area, or do both of those things.

A PSPO can last for up to three years, but this time period can be extended if necessary. It is an offence for a person, without reasonable excuse, to:

  • do anything that the person is prohibited from doing by a PSPO;
  • or fail to comply with a requirement to which the person is subject under a PSPO.

A fixed penalty notice (FPN) may be issued to a person who breaches this order by acting in a way that is prohibited. The FPN will be offered as an opportunity to avoid prosecution in the Magistrates’ Court by paying a Fixed Penalty of £100.

Should anyone fail to pay or wish for the breach to be challenged in court, the matter will be dealt with through the Magistrates Court. A person who is found guilty of an offence, is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the court’s standard scale of fines (currently £1,000).

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