Protect Crompton Moor and other Green Spaces call from local Liberal Democrat Councillor

Crompton Moor may have featured recently on a BBC Countryfile programme as a place of beauty and wonderment, but Shaw Liberal Democrat Councillor and Chair of Crompton Moor Users Group, Howard Sykes MBE, is concerned that the protection of the moor and our borough’s other much-loved open spaces is threatened by the Council’s failure to properly publicise the local orders that prevent irresponsible behaviour.

Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs) allow local authorities to proscribe certain types of behaviour, imposing financial penalties upon those offenders who choose to ignore them. On moorland, a PSPO would typically prohibit the lighting of fires, the use of Chinese lanterns and irresponsible cycling and motor-cycling other than on certain defined routes, and place certain restrictions on dog-walking, hunting and dog fouling They are intended to keep the public safe and prevent harm to the natural environment.

Councillor Sykes wrote to Council officers asking why Oldham Council’s website had not shown details of the PSPOs in place across the borough for many months and why signage on the moor has not replaced. Commenting, he said: “Regrettably our green spaces are from time-to-time invaded by a few selfish and mindless idiots who chose to despoil our green spaces and ruin the quiet enjoyment for the vast majority. PSPOs are one means we can fight back against this lawless minority, but we cannot prosecute them if we do not publicise them.”

Howard Sykes, countryside

In the response, Councillor Sykes was informed that, after a review of over 200 existing PSPOs as required by law last year, the Council’s Legal Services Department is now authorising the new orders and will place the details on the Council’s website by the end of March, following his intervention. As to the physical replacement of the signs, there is still no news!

“It is disappointing that we shall have to wait another month for the website to show the details, but more worrying that there was no confirmation about the replacement of the physical signs”, added Councillor Sykes. “I am going to keep badgering Council officers on this as anti-social behaviour has gotten worse over the Lockdown and my wager is that it will become worse still when this is lifted.”

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