News article

Exeter’s red boundary lines


Keeping Exeter free of anti-social behaviour

Devon & Cornwall Police is launching a campaign that will help promote an anti-social behaviour free zone across Exeter’s city centre.

‘Know your boundaries’ will see a temporary red line marked along key routes surrounding the city. This will be supported by explanatory signs erected on lamp posts.

The red boundary will be a visual reminder of the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) where certain conditions have to be met. The PSPO aims to mitigate behaviours that are likely to have a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality, as well as provide safety to those frequenting the area.

The PSPO was first introduced in 2017 as a measure to control anti-social behaviour in the city. The consumption of alcohol, along with other anti-social behaviours can see individuals dispersed from the area and fined up to £1000 at court. Other measures can include individuals being banned from bars and clubs throughout the city.

The boundary lines will be displayed between Sunday 16th and Sunday 23rd September, coinciding with the university’s Fresher’s Week when thousands of students join the community.

The Fresher’s week has a long history of close partnership working between multiple agencies to ensure not only a fun week for the students, but minimal disruption for neighbouring properties. Measures are put in place to help students integrate well into the community, including over 100 volunteers who help manage the arrival of the students and keep them safe on nights out. 

The idea of the red boundary campaign is the brainchild of Exeter’s Police Community Support Officer Ben Turner who himself graduated from the city’s university in 2016. He said “we hope everyone enjoying the city centre, including students, will respect the neighbourhood by engaging positively with the project and keeping noise to a minimum. The campaign also aims to keep people safe by promoting key safety messages leading up to Fresher’s Week and during it.” 

Anyone breaching the PSPO rules can lead to individuals being dispersed from the city, potentially ending a night out before it has begun and later being fined up to £1000 at court. The police work closely with the university and share information about offending which can lead to separate disciplinary action being taken.

Superintendent Matt Lawler, head of policing in Exeter said “This new innovation is aimed at visibly increasing awareness of the area covered by Exeter’s existing Public Spaces Protection Order, keeping the city centre free from street drinking, anti-social behaviour and other alcohol related, inconsiderate behaviour. By marking out the area and placing additional signage, it is intended that both residents and visitors will be reminded of the order and the expectations of behaviour.”

He continued, “The aim is prevent problems occurring, but officers will of course continue to enforce the PSPO where it is felt necessary, so everyone can enjoy all that the city has to offer throughout the day and evening.”

Know your boundaries is supported by the Office of Police & Crime Commissioner and the city’s Community Safety Partnership which has city centre behaviour as one of its key priorities this year.





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