January 15, 2022 7.30 am

Scunthorpe shoppers praise new ‘common sense’ High Street rules, but not all abide to them

Shoppers still have to dodge speeding cyclists

By Local Democracy Reporter

No biking. No littering. Pick up your dog poo, don’t cause trouble in gangs – and definitely no drinking.

The rules are common sense, but shoppers still have to dodge speeding cyclists who are weaving through the pedestrian zone on Scunthorpe high street.

North Lincolnshire Council has erected a series of stylish signs with the new high street rules, aiming to make it a ‘no-go zone for delinquents’.

They include hefty fines for each of the offences – anyone caught drinking will be issued with a £100 fine, while littering will cost you £150.

Some shoppers are hopeful that the rules will clean up the high street and encourage more shops back, while others think it’s too little, too late.

On a busy Friday morning, most of the rules are being abided by with the exception of cycling.

Scunthorpe high street rules, put up by North Lincolnshire Council. | Photo: Jamie Waller

The Local Democracy Service spotted around ten people biking through crowds in the space of half an hour – although others responsibly got off and pushed.

Shoppers say bikes are still a concern to them, and e-scooters are becoming a menace too.

“The rules are a step in the right direction,” Abid Khan said.

“Bikes can certainly be dangerous when they are weaving around and they can come down the street very fast. I’ve seen plenty of near misses.

“This is a pedestrian area, and that should be enforced.”

Deidre Burnett said: “You do have to watch out for bikes around 3.30pm when schools let out. However, e-scooters have become more of a problem than bikes with young people flying about on them.

“The high street’s very tidy nowadays so I can’t say there’s a problem with litter – cleaners come around regularly six days a week. You have plenty of pigeons, but they will turn up everywhere.”

In terms of litter, the street was indeed spotless and bins weren’t overflowing.

No one had decided to have a swig of alcohol at that time of the day – although evenings and weekends may be a different case.

There was a group of elderly ladies having a chat outside a coffee shop, but presumably they didn’t call into the category of ‘loitering’.

However, some felt that anti-social behaviour wasn’t the high street’s main problem that needs to be tackled.

Friends Gale Moss and Sue Brown had reluctantly come into the town centre, and didn’t think any rules would convince them to visit more often.

“It’s gross, I don’t like to come into the town centre. We avoid it except when we come to have our nails done,” Gale said.

Sue added: “It just looks dirty. I don’t think that will change until more shops open up.”

Graham Frith, owner of Scunthorpe Tackle Centre said he wanted to see change to attract shops back to the town centre.

“I hope this works – a lot of big names have moved to retail parks over the last ten to 15 years, so it will take a lot of investment and change to bring them back.”

North Lincolnshire Council say the rules will help to make it a safe and welcoming place.

Leader Councillor Rob Waltham said: “It is great to hear that people are beginning to heed the rules but those who are not need to know we will keep enforcing until they do too – the area will become a no-go zone for delinquents.

“The small minority of people who think certain behaviours are acceptable will realise that they will not be tolerated; the high street will be a safe and welcoming place for people to shop and to meet friends.

“There are a great many fantastic independent traders working hard to bring a broad selection of products to people – it is those who we are supporting.

“Just as we have continued to push the fines for people dropping litter, we will keep pushing to stop this anti-social behaviour in the High Street.

“We’ll double-down on our efforts to make them change their behaviour.”

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