Late-night hours at Hoxton McDonald’s blamed for unsavoury acts
PUBLISHED: 16:38 13 April 2016 | UPDATED: 10:08 22 April 2016
A McDonald’s branch open until the early hours has been blamed for attracting drug crime, prostitution and street drinking to Hoxton.
A Hackney Council-led review into anti-social behaviour (ASB) in the borough asked community figures for their thoughts and advice.
Reports of ASB went down overall in 2015/16, but begging, street drinking and prostitution are on the rise in certain areas – Hackney Central, London Fields and the two “night-time economy” (NTE) areas, Dalston and Shoreditch.
There had been a 61 per cent rise in complaints about prostitution, mainly in Shacklewell but also in Finsbury Park, Stamford Hill and Windsor Terrace, near the McDonald’s in City Road, which is on the edge of the NTE area.
The branch is open until 2am every night, and was highlighted in the report as a hub for anti-social behaviour because of that.
Last year the same branch had an application to open until 5am thrown out by councillors after neighbours objected.
A spokesman for the fast-food chain said: “We are looking at this report in detail and would like to reassure members of the public and council that we take anti-social behaviour extremely seriously.
“We pride ourselves on our work with the local council and police and will look to address concerns specifically linked to us in due course.”
The ASB review took place at the end of last year, following the scrapping of the controversial Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) that could have seen rough sleepers fined.
The council and Hackney police are consulting on the best ways to tackle the problems, including revisiting the possibility of different PSPOs.
Elsewhere in the Community Safety and Social Inclusion Scrutiny Commission report, it was revealed only 11pc of the councillors who responded said they felt confident handling ASB casework due to a lack of knowledge of how to go about it.
It also noted there had been a rise in the number of people travelling into the borough to beg.
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