Boston

Residents argue apathy over Boston street drinking decline

Residents in Boston have taken to social media to claim that figures released showing a decline in street drinking show an apathy to reporting the issue.

The MP for Boston Matt Warman published a post on Facebook and Twitter which used data compiled by Boston Borough Council and Lincolnshire Police to show a halving of public complaints from 78 in 2017, to 40 in 2018.

A graph of Enforcement Action vs Public Reports showed a decline in both, with more action taken than reports.

He said:  “There is more to do, but significant progress has been made.

“Today, we see lower numbers of reports than ever, and pro-active police action outweighs complaints from the public, as the data shows.

“I’d like to thank all those involved who have helped to tackle this problem, and would urge all those who want to see even more done to bear in mind that if an offence isn’t reported, authorities won’t know how best to act.”

Matt Warman. Photo: Steve Smailes for Lincolnshire Reporter

However, responses on social media appear to show residents continue to feel differently when it comes to street drinking.

A number claimed to see drinking on a regular basis, while others called for more patrols. Residents also renewed calls for off-licences to be stopped from opening.

Steve Hamilton said: “The reason no one reports it is because you can’t get through and if you do no one attends due to police not having any officers free to deal with it.”

Neill John Hastie said: “We need more police patrols and a permanent police presence in Boston especially in the evenings.

“We need customs and excise to raid the off licences not just once a year but regularly,” he added.

Carl Creasey said: “Surely this just highlights the public are getting used to seeing it, o report it less. I see street drinkers every single day.”

Following the comments, Boston’s Community Beat Insp Andrew Morrice said: “Enforcement figures are at an all time high at a time when public reports are at an all time low.

“Market place is clear, Stump is clear, Bargates are clear. Some small pockets remain. On public engagements people aren’t asking about it any more. I’d say we done pretty well. We are doing far more than the public ask us to. I’d say that was success”

Cabinet member and former town centre portfolio holder Paul Skinner also took to Twitter saying:  “The information shows the facts. The police and local authorities can only respond to these even though both try to be proactive by using data compiled.”