Police are making a bid to clean up drunks causing trouble on Cambridge's Mill Road – and cannabis smokers won't be ignored.
Officers are calling on residents and traders on the street to help them gather intelligence by shopping troublemakers and drug dealers operating in the area.
A report published this week after a meeting of Cambridge City Council's east area committee outlined what police were doing to clean up the street.
A number of banning injunctions have already been slapped on rough sleepers and beggars causing problems.
The street is in a Cumulative Impact Zone (CIZ) to crackdown on alcohol-fuelled violence as a CIZ gives a presumption against granting new alcohol licensing consents.
But Cambridge City Council has launched a consultation about scrapping part of the zone in the Romsey area of Mill Road from the railway bridge to Brookfields – the results of which are to be published this month (April).
The zone would remain in place in the section of Mill Road running from Parkers Piece to the railway bridge.
Drink and drugs
Residents also asked what action would be taken against people smoking cannabis in public.
The report said: "The police would not ignore those people smoking cannabis in public as this was an illegal activity.
"However by the time the police arrived after an incidence had been reported it was more than likely that the activity had ceased."
Lynda Kilkelly, the council's Safer Communities Section Manager, also told the committee the Streetlife working team would "in the first instance offer continued support and only when the behaviour did not change, enforcement action would be taken", against persistent troublemakers.
Report troublemakers and drug dealers
Mill Road and its cemetery have long been a haunt of drug takers and rough sleepers where homeless people sleep in graves by moving tombstones.
Responding to questions and comments from members of the public and the committee, Inspector Paul Rogerson said: "I would advise members of the public to feed information concerning illegal activity onto the police web portal.
"The information was then assessed/graded on a weekly basis with the Prevent Team who identified problem areas geographically and action to be undertaken.
"This could be arranging high visibility patrols to deter illegal activities such as drug dealing.
"While it may be perceived there was a gap in communication between reporting illegal activity (such as drug dealing), and the police taking action; the information delivered to the central intelligence unit or the prevent team was anonymous.
"Therefore the individual would not receive any update as officers simply did not know who had supplied the information.
"This was to negate the risk to the individual to be identified by those carrying out the criminal activity."
New plan to help the homeless
The report added that a plan was in place to continue to publicise Cambridge Street Aid Initiative and have locations across the city which would allow an electronic donations to be made. There were also plans for an app to be developed.
So far a total of £23,000 had been donated with £17,000 of grants allocated.
Street Aid was promoted by the police when visiting universities, residential schools and language schools as part of the Community Safety Crime Prevention presentation.