Public Spaces Protection Order - Rushden Town Centre

Closed 31 Dec 2023

Opened 13 Nov 2023

Feedback updated 14 Feb 2024

We asked

Residents were asked to give their views on a proposed new PSPO for Rushden town centre. Rushden has been experiencing significant anti-social behaviour in the town centre.

The proposed restricted area that the PSPO will cover was set out, along with the suggested prohibitions. Residents were asked to say whether they agreed with the making of the PSPO overall; the proposed restricted area; what they felt about each prohibition and whether additional areas of the town, or other prohibitions should be considered for inclusion in the order.  

You said

NNC received 148 responses, with 83% of respondents saying they strongly agreed or agreed with making the PSPO.

The proposed restricted area was very widely regarded as the critical area for the PSPO to cover.

ASDA was identified as a key area for consideration of extending the PSPO restricted area.

Several other roads were identified further out from the town centre. However, for practical reasons with enforcement, these couldn’t be included.

The prohibitions were widely regarded as the key ones.

Many respondents offered other comments about their own experiences of issues in the town centre.

We did

All views helped support the PSPO proposals when they were considered and approved by NNC’s Executive at its meeting on 14 January 2024.

The PSPO is now being implemented and will be formally sealed as a legal order to start shortly. It will be in place for three years, when NNC will be required to review it and either extend for a further three years, with or without amendments, or discontinue with it.


North Northamptonshire Council (NNC) is considering making a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) to cover the area of Rushden town centre marked in red on the map below.

A PSPO is made under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

When an area of public open space is found to be suffering with a lot of anti-social behaviour (ASB), and that behaviour by some people affects the enjoyment of the area by others, a PSPO helps the police and council officers to take action against those causing the problems.

PSPOs help make public spaces better places to live, work, shop and visit without problems from rowdy street drinkers, people using them as toilets, using them for riding bikes and scooters dangerously and generally harassing people for money etc.

There are no specific rules on what restrictions the council can put in a PSPO. That’s very much down to what’s happening in the area and stopping people from enjoying the benefits of the public space.

NNC is working with Rushden Town Council and the police and together feel that the following types of anti-social behaviour should be prohibited by the PSPO:-

  1. Alcohol consumption - Being in the possession of any open vessel suspected of containing alcohol, having been requested by an Authorised Officer to surrender the same, unless it is being consumed on a licensed premise i.e. a pub or a restaurant.
  1. Rowdy or inconsiderate behaviour - Acting in a manner that causes harassment, alarm or distress or acting in a way that an Authorised Officer reasonably perceives to be intimidating and/or aggressive as a result of consuming alcohol.
  1. Using the public space as a toilet - Urinating or defecating other than in a facility specifically designed and intended for such use.
  1. Begging - by making any verbal, non-verbal (excluding busking) or written request from a standing, sitting down position for money, donations or goods-including the placing of hats or containers for money.
  1. Misuse of motorised or powered vehicles - Using a motorised or powered vehicle within the prohibition area causing unreasonable anti-social noise, public nuisance, or danger to others, and or refusal by a person in possession or control of a motorised or powered vehicle, to remove the vehicle from the prohibition area when requested to do so by an Authorised Officer.

Map showing the boundary of the proposed PSPO:

Your browser does not support inline PDF viewing. Please download the PDF.

Making a PSPO requires NNC to consult residents, shops, businesses and service organisations on whether people feel the above restrictions/prohibitions are right for Rushden town centre. People may feel they are, or there should be other restrictions in addition to these or maybe there are people who feel they are too restrictive or shouldn’t be in the PSPO.

Once the consultation has ended, the results will help shape the final draft PSPO and that will go to NNC’s Executive for consideration and approval. Once approved, it will have a start date and will last for a 3-year period.

Signage will be displayed in the designated area informing people that the area is covered by a PSPO and what could happen if somebody breaks the rules and continues to carry on behaving against the PSPO. This can be a fixed penalty notice (FPN) fine or even an appearance in court.

How to have your say

Please give us your views by completing the below online questionnaire.

We will deliver paper questionnaires with return envelopes for people who have restricted access to the internet.

If you have any questions or would like this consultation information in a different format, please contact :

You can also post your response to:

Kish Lad
North Northamptonshire Council
Safer Communities Team
1st floor Deene House
New Post Office Square
NN17 1GD

For information about how consultation and engagement responses are managed, please see the consultation and engagement privacy notice. 

This consultation closes at midnight, 31 December 2023.


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