First Closure Order in Arun, West Sussex, reinstated 11 08 2015


A Closure Order originally granted on Friday, 5 June, following repeated instances of anti-social behaviour at a property in Bognor Regis has now been reinstated.

At a hearing at Chichester Crown Court on Monday, 10 August, the court reinstated the original Closure Order following two reported incidents constituting a breach of the Closure Order which was varied at an earlier court hearing on 23 July to allow only one person to remain in the property.

The property has been boarded up and the order will continue to remain fully in force until and including Friday, 4 September, preventing the tenant from remaining at the property with immediate effect.

The Closure Order is the first of its type to be used by Arun District Council under new powers from the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

Councillor Paul Wotherspoon, Cabinet Member for Community Services at Arun District Council, said: “We are pleased with the court’s decision as it confirms our view that this property must remain subject to a full Closure Order to prevent future occurrences of severe and sustained anti-social behaviour which have a negative impact on the local community.

“Key to the success of this order was a member of the community giving us a statement to secure one of the breaches. This is an example of the real difference the community can make by working with us. The Council’s close joint working has continued every step of the way with our key partner Sussex Police to ensure the local community are supported and responded to quickly to take the breaches back to court.”

“We remain committed to tackling and addressing anti-social behaviour and crime in our local communities. This case demonstrates our willingness and tenacity in taking all available steps to stop problematic behaviour so that communities are, and feel safer. We will monitor the property and take robust action should any further breaches to the Closure Order occur.”

Action was originally taken by Arun District Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team and Sussex Police, before a serious or significant incident occurred at the address in Ash Grove. Prior to the original Closure Order, repeated attempts were taken to resolve these issues for local residents and the community before consultation with relevant agencies for the application of the Closure Order.

As previous offers of support and restrictions by a number of the agencies had not managed to deter the behaviour it was decided that robust action was required to restore the peace in the neighbourhood.

Inspector Marc Clothier, Neighbourhood Police Team, said: “The result of this last hearing is an excellent example of what can be achieved when partners work together with support from the local community. Achieving the Closure Order in the first place was the result of a considerable amount of work undertaken by Arun District Council supported by Sussex Police, but was an appropriate course of action in response to the situation. The subsequent appearances in Court have shown the standard of the evidence provided has stood up to scrutiny and I hope the latest outcome will ensure a sustained improvement for the local community."