GULL WAR: Plan for a new order to fine seagull feeders

A seagull in flight
A seagull in flight
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A Fylde coast authority could be set to declare war on seagulls - anyone caught feeding them facing a £100 fine under legislation designed to tackle anti-social behaviour

A consultation has today been launched over the introduction of Public Space Protection Orders which would prohibit the feeding of gulls in large parts of Wyre.

Cleveleys, Thornton, Fleetwood and Knott End are all covered by the proposals which have been launched in response to an increase in reported attacks on humans.

Under the proposals Wyre Council would ask members of the public to report individuals and hot spots where gulls are being fed.

A consultation document published by Wyre makes clear the increasing problem posed by gulls.

It says: "The council recognises that seagulls are a welcomed symbol of the British seaside, however reported problems associated with seagulls are on the increase.

"The council want to pursue considerate and controlled methods of dealing with the growing population through the introduction of a new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO)."

The authority says there has been an increase in the seagull population caused by larger broods and a lack of predators.

The council says data shows there has been:

*An increase in reported physical attacks on humans by seagulls in Wyre,

*Widespread social media concern,

*Extended noise activity throughout the night and early morning.

The authority is also concerned by the impact of seagull poo on bathing water quality and increased reported of property damage

Traders in Cleveleys are clear there is a problem but some are concerned by how fines could be administered.

Martin Hunns, from the Carousel Diner, said: "There is a problem with seagulls but I don't think it's been as bad this year as it was last year

"When people finish eating outside as soon as they leave the table the gulls are down for the scraps, our staff are pretty sharp getting out there and getting it cleared up.

"People shouldn't be feeding them but I'm not sure how you go about fining people.

"Is there going to be a dedicated seagull patrol?"

Jane Littlewood from the Rossall Beach group said: "If we were more respectful of where we lived and did not leave litter lying about and did not feed the gulls then I feel we could get on more harmoniously."

The orders would cover all of Thornton, Cleveleys and Fleetwood as well as all of Knott End.

It is illegal to injure or kill gulls or destroy their nests.

Blackpool Council does not have any orders in place to prevent the feeding of seagulls although the practice is discouraged. The authority is not considering similar measures.

Take part in the consultation HERE