A dispersal order is now in place in Southend city centre as part of our response to the possibility of a large group of people travelling to the city.
We’re aware of an event which is planned to take place today in Southend.
The order does not mean there is a blanket ban on people coming to Southend.
It gives officers the power to direct people suspected of acting anti-socially to leave the area. And if they don’t, they could be arrested.
The order, shown below, will be in place for up to 48 hours and will be reviewed regularly. The area covered is shown in the attached maps, and includes Southend High Street, Marine Parade, Pier Hill, Western Esplanade and Southend Central train station.
As part of our response to the planned event, we will also have a significant policing presence in the city throughout today. That presence will also continue into the weekend and our resourcing will be reviewed regularly.
'If you commit crime, you'll be arrested'
Chief Superintendent Waheed Khan, South local policing area commander, has been speaking with business and attraction owners this afternoon, both to hear their concerns and to receive their support.
“I want to be really clear that we – and of course the city’s attractions and businesses – want people to come to Southend, we want them to use all the facilities here – but we won’t tolerate crime and antisocial behaviour. “We have a significant policing presence in the city today. That includes the city centre, across the seafront and close to the train stations. “The dispersal order is by no means a blanket ban on people coming to Southend and enjoying all it has to offer, but if people come here and behave antisocially or commit crime, the reality is we’re going to take a robust approach to that and people acting that way could ultimately end up in a police cell. “Throughout today, and indeed as we enter this weekend, there will be an obvious police presence in city. We’re there to help people and make sure people can enjoy the city safely. But equally, the officers will respond appropriately and robustly if they have to.”