With their picturesque beaches and range of attractions, seaside towns are often considered to be idyllic places to visit and enjoy. But holidaying or day-tripping to such locations doesn’t necessarily provide an insight into the social and economic challenges some of the traditional holiday resorts face or the inequalities and deprivation experienced by residents. These issues have been recognised by the local government and attempts are being made to revitalise the towns and address, what has in some cases been, decades of decline in fortunes.
Media attention has focused on the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic had in areas of highest deprivation and where inequalities are greatest. In a similar way to rates of Covid infection, some of the most deprived areas saw a surge in cases of noise disturbance and Anti-social Behaviour. This has been the experience of Blackpool Council, which saw a huge increase in many different types of complaints. The Council recognises that there are complex societal challenges within some of its communities but is committed to dealing with these problems.
The authority acquired The Noise App in March 2020 and it was quickly integrated into the environmental protection team’s complaint investigation procedures. The app has enabled evidence to be gathered to progress investigations and support enforcement action. However, the need to deal quickly with those responsible and intervene to prevent problems escalating has seen the team embrace a new approach. By placing greater reliance on ASB provisions and, in so doing, strengthening collaborative arrangements with Lancashire Constabulary, officers have been able to get quick and effective resolution to what previously had been complicated and protracted investigations.
To find out more about the approach taken by Blackpool Council, click here.