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With Neil Andrews

Hoodie ban in Romford introduced in crackdown on anti-social behaviour

L to R- PS James Gaskin, Stuart Wilson, The Brewery Manager, Julie Frost, Romford BID Director, Ian Woolley, Manager Primark, Jane Eastaff, Havering Enforcement Manager, Tom Stobbart, The Liberty Manager

Individuals in Romford Town Centre will no longer be able to wear helmets, hoodies or ski masks to cover the face as part of a crackdown on anti-social behaviour.

The hoodie ban safety initiative was launched for all visitors yesterday (Tuesday, 18 April).

This rule will also apply to delivery drivers. The use of face coverings for health or religious reasons will however still be permitted.

Romford BID, Police, Havering Council’s enforcement team and all four shopping centres in the town – The Liberty, The Brewery, The Mercury and Romford Shopping Hall – have joined together to enforce the rule.

These parties meet regularly to discuss issues facing the town and what changes can be made to tackle them. Romford, like numerous towns up and down the country, is facing a rise in anti-social behaviour.

Anyone to break the new rule will be escorted off the premises in question immediately. The police will be called if there is any aggression once asked to leave.

Romford BID Director, Julie Frost said: “I really hope that this initiative makes visitors feel safer – knowing throughout the town there are measures in place to deter anti-social behaviour and prevent crime.

“Working together we are determined to restore people’s confidence and ensure the town is a welcoming and enjoyable place to live, work and visit.”

Posters explaining this change can be seen throughout the town and all security teams, across the shopping centres in the town, have been briefed on this new process.

The Liberty Centre Manager, Tom Stobbart, said: “Anti-social behaviour has a detrimental impact on our communities, making people feel unsafe in their neighbourhoods.

“We are working together to instigate change and hopefully get to the causes of some anti-social behaviour and help prevent some crimes from happening.”

Leader of Havering Council, Councillor Ray Morgon said: “We work closely with all our partners in looking at how we can help make the borough safer to live, work, visit and go to school in.

“We want to look at ways in which we can work towards the prevention of anti-social behaviour and reducing it. Making our residents and visitors feel safer will also help encourage them to shop locally and help our businesses thrive.”

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