Sefton Coastal Landscape Partnership warning people that anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated

We are warning that anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated as organisations across Sefton urge people to continue to be sensible on the Sefton coastline this Bank Holiday weekend.

The agencies who make up the Sefton Coastal Landscape Partnership include Sefton Council, Merseyside Police, Merseyside Fire and Rescue, British Transport Police, National Trust Formby, Natural England, the RNLI and other key partners.

The partnership has again joined forces to remind visitors to the area to respect local residents and the beaches, parks and beauty spots in Sefton.

Sefton Superintendent Graeme Robson said: “Throughout August, we have been reminding visitors to Sefton to act responsibly and I am pleased to say the overwhelming majority have done so.

“We have had some reports of littering, fire and BBQs being lit as well as people drinking alcohol on the beaches. We have also seen cars being parked illegally and without consideration for homeowners whose drives have been blocked.

“We know that this coastline is a beautiful part of the world and are realistic about the fact that people will want to spend time here over the Bank Holiday, especially in nice weather.

“But we will not tolerate anti-social behaviour, underage drinking, drug taking and other issues that could have a detrimental impact on other people visiting as well as local residents.

“I want to remind everyone that a Public Spaces Protection Order has been in place since 2018 prohibiting the consumption of alcohol in areas including Formby, Crosby and Ainsdale beaches – and we have taken alcohol from people approaching the beach areas.

“We will be out in force – on foot, in patrols cars, on quad bikes and anyone acting anti-socially should expect to be dealt with by police in a robust manner, and we will also support other agencies in their work.

“We will continue to encourage people to keep to coronavirus guidelines, to protect themselves and others, and if necessary we will disperse people and take enforcement action.

“Those who are looking to enjoy our open spaces sensibly and safely should not have to be confronted with anti-social behaviour of any kind, and I want to reassure those affected that we will again make a co-ordinated effort to prevent such incidents from occurring so that your own enjoyment of the area is not spoiled by an ignorant minority.

“We have a number of tools at our disposal to prevent and tackle anti-social behaviour, including the introduction of Dispersal Zones, but it is our hope that people visiting the area will treat the environment and residents with respect.”

Community Safety Coordinator for Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service, Michael Buratti said:
 “We want people to have fun and enjoy the Sefton coast, however this must be done without creating fire risks and increasing demand on emergency services. We would like to remind people that deliberately starting a fire is arson.

“Deliberate fires are investigated and the Arson Team will be working with Merseyside Police, Local Authorities and other agencies to identify offenders. Parents – please speak to your children about the very real consequences of arson for themselves and others.”

Kate Martin, Area Ranger at National Trust Formby, said: “Everyone who visits Formby and the Sefton coastline can see how special this place is. However, litter and fires can seriously impact our conservation work to protect what makes it so special, from some of the best mobile sand dune habitat in the UK to our rare wildlife such as the native red squirrel, Natterjack Toads and Northern Dune Tiger Beetles.

“That’s why, together with our partners in the Sefton Coastal Landscape Partnership, we’re asking all visitors to ‘leave nothing but your footprints’. Take your litter home or use the bins provided in our car parks. Don’t use barbecues or light fires, as a single spark can cause a lot of damage to our precious nature and wildlife, as well as take away valuable time and resources from our emergency services.”

Dave Mercer, Senior Reserve Manager for Natural England’s Ainsdale Sand Dunes National Nature Reserve said:  I’d just like to mirror the message from our colleagues at the National Trust; the amazing nature reserves on the Sefton coast are here for the quiet enjoyment of the countryside and for the very special rare wildlife they support.

“Our staff and volunteers work hard all year to ensure they are safe and inspiring places for all visitors to enjoy – when you visit please follow the countryside code and keep dogs under close control, ‘share with care’ when cycling and of course take all your rubbish home with you.  We’ve had several dangerous wildfires to deal with this year so please leave the BBQ at home and help protect people and wildlife.

You can follow #MySefton and #Beachsafe on social media for more advice, news and videos, and via the following channels:
@SeftonCouncil @MerseyFire @Merseytravel @RNLI @BTPMersey @NaturalEngland @NTFormby