Operation Aurora will see officers and partners tackling anti-social behaviour in Blyth Town centre following recent concerns from residents in the community.
Local officers across Blyth are working alongside partners to ensure the town remains a safe place to live and work and continues to be a place where residents can feel safe and not intimidated by other members of the public who choose to partake in anti-social behaviour and disorder.
Following concerns raised at previous community meetings, officers from the Neighbourhood Team developed Operation Aurora to tackle the issue and reassure the public that they were being listened to and that positive action was being taken.
Reports included adult alcohol related disorder and small pockets of vagrancy in the town centre.
Neighbourhood Inspector Neil Hall, one of the officers leading on the operation from Northumbria Police, said: “We take these types of complaints very seriously, as it affects the quality of life for local residents and business owners and such behaviour is unacceptable and it will not be tolerated.
"We have high profile targeted patrols in the areas where problems have been identified and we are working with our partners including Northumberland County Council and the Blue Light Group to identify offenders and take appropriate action against them.
"We want to make it clear that persistent offenders must face the consequences of their actions. One arrest included a 47-year-old man who has been released under bail conditions which include restrictions on entering the town centre.
“Our priority is making our communities safer and we will continue to take steps to reduce anti-social behaviour over the coming months."
Officers are using a variety of tactics to prevent recurrence, including extra patrols and using police powers to seize alcohol as well as issuing a Public Space Protection Order and dispersal notices to stop groups of people gathering in the street when causing disorder.
Also as part of the operation officers are working with Shelter to tackle aggressive vagrancy by establishing donations points for residents wishing to help those who are legitimately in need this winter as well as housing.
Insp Hall added: “We have identified that the majority of those individuals loitering and begging in and around the market place are not in fact homeless or in need. They prey on kind members of the public to donate money - sometimes forcefully demanding large sums.
“By setting up legitimate and safe donation points we can help those who really need it and stop those who intimidate and harass local residents and business owners.”
Anyone who wants to report concerns around anti-social behaviour, or has information about individuals involved, should contact police via 101 and ask to speak to Blyth Neighbourhood Police Team or report it online via the Northumbria Police website.