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Scheme to clean up city’s nightlife

PUBLISHED: 20:19 02 June 2006 | UPDATED: 10:57 22 October 2010

SHAUN LOWTHORPE

More toilets, all-night buses and a ban on two-for-one drinks deals are needed to clean up nightlife in Norwich, with businesses taxed to pick up the tab, according to a new report.

More toilets, all-night buses and a ban on two-for-one drinks deals are needed to clean up nightlife in Norwich, with businesses taxed to pick up the tab, according to a new report.

A detailed audit by the Norwich Society's environment committee called for a business improvement district to be created, similar to one recently agreed in Ipswich.

That would cover the Prince of Wales Road and Riverside area so that pub and club owners paid the price for keeping a lid on disruption and yob behaviour in the early hours.

Vicky Manthorpe, Norwich Society administrator, said the report was also produced in response to city centre home-owners' anxiety about the state of the streets.

“We've now got a lot more people moving into the city centre to live,” she said. “Everybody thinks that's marvellous but it means this is right on their doorsteps.

“We are talking about dirty streets, not enough toilets and lack of public transport. There should also be better aware-ness among the young people who cause the problems.”

The committee decided to spend time with police to look at the effects of all-night drinking hours and favours voluntary agreements with firms to help tackle problems.

“Local residents suffer rubbish, noise and public urination, and the new Licensing Act has resulted in longer opening hours, partic-ularly for pubs, which are now competing more vigorously for custom with nightclubs which have monopolised the city's post-midnight drinks trade until now,” the report said.

“After a somewhat precar-ious start, Norwich is riding the night-time economy tiger quite well. Imaginative policing and energetic team-work has put us in a better position than some other communities.

“But the effort is beginning to run into major difficulties; most centre around the question of who pays for further improvements.”

Weekend violence was not new and it was important to keep the issue in perspective, the report said.

“When thousands of people leave venues in the early hours, many of them drunk, to queue for scarce transport or takeaway food, some level of violence is likely.

“Getting more people home as quickly as possible is therefore vital, yet we were told by police that some could wait for as long as two hours at the end of the night before getting a taxi.”

The report also said that there were not enough taxis available at crucial times in the city and more taxi bays were needed at the top of Prince of Wales Road.

It also said the banning cars in the road on Friday and Saturday nights should be explored and bus operators should be sought to run night buses.


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