A Burnt Oak councillor has welcomed a crackdown on street drinking that will see offenders hit by fines of up to £1,000.

Barnet Council will launch its first Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) covering Burnt Oak town centre and three nearby parks on Monday (October 8).

It means council and police officers will be able to confiscate alcohol from anyone drinking publicly outside pubs, restaurants and other venues in the restricted area.

People who refuse to hand it over will have to pay a £100 penalty or risk being taken to court, where they could receive a fine of up to £1,000.

Sara Conway, Burnt Oak councillor and Barnet Labour lead on community leadership, said: “A PSPO to prohibit street drinking is something I have been working on with residents and stakeholders over many months.

“I am so pleased to see this is happening and would like to thank all the residents who have been involved, the council workers and our local police.

“I really hope we can start making things better for our Burnt Oak community.”

Cllr Sara ConwayCllr Sara Conway

The PSPO was supported by 93 per cent of people who took part in a council consultation earlier this year.

It will stretch along Watling Avenue from its junction with the A5 Burnt Oak Broadway to the other side of the railway line.

Montrose Playing Fields, Silk Stream Park and Watling Park will also be covered, along with nearby roads including Barnfield Road, Back Lane, Market Lane, and car parks.

Councillor Reuben Thompstone, chairman of Barnet Council’s community leadership and libraries Committee, said: “Residents reported how their quality of life was being impacted by street drinking and littering in the area.

“With the support of local residents, we are introducing this order which will be proactively enforced and regularly monitored by the council, the local police Safer Neighbourhood Teams and our partners.

“We will also be stepping up our efforts to engage with the street drinkers by deploying specialist outreach support services to help them. We want to make our borough a better place for everyone, and this is just one of the things we are doing to make this happen.”

The PSPO will last for two years, subject to annual review, but could be extended for a longer period.