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Seven in court after cycling in Grimsby town centre

11:34 am, Tuesday, 24th November 2020 - 3 years ago

General

Seven people are sharing a court bill of more than £2,200 after failing to pay fines for cycling in Grimsby town centre.

Cases against three defendants were proved in their absence. Two were fined £293 and the third was fined £250. All three were ordered to pay £226 costs and a £32 victim surcharge.

Two defendants pleaded guilty by post. One was fined £120 and the other £166. One was ordered to pay £80 towards costs and the other £226 costs. Both were ordered to pay a £32 victim surcharge.

Two attended and pleaded guilty in court. Both were fined £120. They were ordered to pay a contribution towards costs of £80 and £100 respectively and a victim surcharge of £34 and £32.

All seven cases were heard at Grimsby Magistrates’ Court on Friday 20 November.

The Friday before, cases against three defendants were proved in their absence for cycling in a prohibited zone in breach of a Public Space Protection Order.

The defendants had been issued with a fixed penalty notice at the time of the offence and given the opportunity to pay the fine to avoid prosecution. At court, each defendant was fined £100 and ordered to pay £226.04 costs and a £32 victim surcharge.

Fourteen people were prosecuted on Friday 6 November for cycling offences and shared a court bill of almost £9,000.

In total, 24 people have been convicted this month for cycling in a prohibited cycling zone in breach of a Public Space Protection Order.

All the defendants had been issued with a £100 fixed penalty notice for cycling in the pedestrianised area on Victoria Street.

The fixed penalty notice is 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 of cycling in a prohibited zone.

A Public Space Protection Order was introduced in July 2019 banning people from cycling in the pedestrian area. Since then, a total of 415 have been issued.

Councillor Ron Shepherd, cabinet member for Safer and Stronger Communities at North East Lincolnshire Council, said:

“There’s absolutely no need to cycle in the pedestrian area – Bethlehem Street and Osborne Street are literally a few metres away and run parallel to it.

“If you put others at risk by cycling in Grimsby’s pedestrian zone, we will fine you. If you don’t pay the £100 fixed penalty notice, you will end up in court facing a much larger bill. I’m grateful to the courts for supporting our stance.

“Nuisance cycling is a problem that shoppers, people working in the town centre and the business community raise with me on many occasions.

“These latest court results will act as a deterrent and help keep the town centre a safe and welcoming place.”

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.

Private patrols were introduced after a wide-ranging public consultation in 2017. People said they wanted to see more enforcement against those who litter and don’t pick up after their dogs.

This was followed by the introduction a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) for a number of other offences in summer 2019.

North East Lincolnshire Council works closely with other organisations, including the police and local businesses, to enforce legislation and help keep the town centre safe.

As well as littering, dog control and cycling offences, officers can also enforce against smoking in commercial vehicles.

North East Lincolnshire introduced private patrols for littering and dog fouling in November 2018, as part of an agreement with Doncaster Council. Officers started issuing fines for cycling in the pedestrian area in July 2019.

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