Wales

Coronavirus: Protection orders considered after beach brawls

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Media captionA mass brawl erupted in June at Ogmore-by-Sea

Orders allowing alcohol to be confiscated and fines issued could be imposed by a Welsh council, following disorder on beaches and in parks.

The Vale of Glamorgan council said it is considering the measures after problems, including a mass brawl, at Ogmore-by-Sea.

It comes after police in other parts of Wales chose to issue dispersal to combat anti-social behaviour.

The latest measures in the Vale would affect six areas, including Ogmore.

Large crowds are expected to head for Welsh beaches on Saturday as the warm weather and sunshine looks set to continue.

The Vale's deputy leader Lis Burnett said police estimated between 20,000 and 25,000 were on Barry Island on Thursday, with similar numbers of sun seekers seen on Friday.

South Wales Police issued a dispersal order there last week after a series of disturbances in the town.

Image caption Sun seekers were flocking to Barry Island on Friday

"I think a lot of people have seen a range of incidents that are happening at coastal locations across Wales," Ms Burnett told BBC Radio Wales Breakfast.

She said it was a "major inconvenience" for people who are "trying to use resorts and destinations in a responsible way and just have a nice family day out".

The council has now started a public consultation on introducing new measures, known as public space protection orders.

Transport for Wales and British Transport Police have urged people to only use public transport for essential travel where there are no alternatives and to follow safety guidelines.

Leyton Powell, of Transport for Wales Rail Services, said: "Our capacity has been massively reduced due to social distancing measures and we must maintain safe space for those key workers using our services."

Image caption Customers joined socially distanced queues for fish and chips

The orders would give powers to both the police and council enforcement officers over preventing alcohol consumption in public, with options to hand out fixed penalty notices.

"We want a suite of measures available to us that both we and the police working together can enforce, to make sure that we can clamp down on anti-social behaviour in mass gatherings," added Ms Burnett.

"We all know that we want our destinations on the coast in Wales to be nice family destinations, and sometimes you need these sort of things to allow you to remind people of how they should be behaving."

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