LYME Regis Town Council is to raise complaints regarding anti-social behaviour and late-night drinking on the seafront with the police and licensing authority.
The issue was raised at this week’s Town Management & Highways Committee, after the Mayor of Lyme Regis, Councillor Brian Larcombe MBE, received a letter of complaint from a resident of Marine Parade.
The resident, who has remained anonymous, said: “The summer months have always had their fair share of revellers who spill into the streets, beach and public gardens and make enough noise to keep those nearby of all ages awake during the early hours of the morning.
“The last two years have been exacerbated, possibly by late licence venues that at times have contributed to disturbance throughout the night, particularly at weekends.
“This year has been worse than any other with noise pollution; at one point we had visitors staying in our property when we were away, who kept awake with items landing on the roof, as well as loud music throughout the evening and into the early hours of the morning. This alarmed them enough to contact the police, who duly responded and cleared the gardens.
“We have ourselves been disturbed by very late night music and shouting especially in June, July and August and particularly on Friday and Saturday until sleep deprivation makes us dread the weekends and what it might bring.”
The complainant added that broken bottles and silver gas canisters had been thrown over her property from the public gardens, and said bottles, cans and drug-related items could often been found in the gardens after disruptive nights.
She added that she and her husband had previously lived in Bristol and were “used to city life and tolerant of youthful venture”, but said young people did not need the encouragement of a late night venue “taking advantage of them” by serving drinks until 3am.
Some questioned whether the council should accept an anonymous letter, but Councillor Belinda Bawden argued it was acceptable in the circumstances, as she would fear intimidation and damage to her property if she had submitted a similar complaint with her name attached.
The mayor said he had actually received several emails complaining of similar problems, and suggested writing to Dorset’s Police and Crime Commissioner and the licensing authority, which is Dorset Council, making them aware of the issues and requesting an increased police presence in town during the hours of complaint.
“It’s unlikely we’ll get an increased police presence but we have to report the problems we’re having,” he added.
Councillor Larcombe also suggested that the licensing approach in the town also be reviewed.
Committee chairman John Broom commented: “It’s out of our remit but the only thing we can do is speak to Dorset Council and ask them to review the licenses, and that they consult with local councils when they give out licenses like this, because they don’t at the moment.”
Councillor Belinda Bawden said she was very concerned about underage drinking and drug taking.
“I think it’s awful and we can’t just stand by and do nothing when we know it’s happening,” she said.