Youths dispersed from Preston streets under orders from police after setting off fireworks

Youths had to be dispersed from the streets of Preston after fireworks were set off outside people's homes last night (May 26).

By Matthew Calderbank
Thursday, 27th May 2021, 10:16 am
Updated Thursday, 27th May 2021, 11:16 am

Lancashire Police put a Section 34 Dispersal Order in place at around 10.30pm to allow its officers to deal with troublesome youths who are believed to be responsible for the anti-social incidents.

It followed a number of complaints from residents who said they were alarmed at fireworks being set off late at night, with some saying the noise had upset their pets.

The dispersal order allowed police to instruct anyone thought to be involved in the anti-social disorder to leave the area and return directly to their homes.

Fireworks seized by police after a similar incident in Preston earlier this year. Pic: Lancashire Police

Officers were also given the power to stop and search those suspected of carrying fireworks, with a number of teenagers searched in and around New Hall Lane.

The order was in place until 3am today (Thursday, May 27) within the area bordered by London Road, Ribbleton Lane, Blackpool Road, the A59 and the River Ribble.

The force has not said whether any fireworks had been seized from those searched.

Lancashire Police said the dispersal powers can remain in place for up to 48 hours. The force said it will confirm later today (Thursday, May 27) whether the same action will be taken tonight.

A map of the area covered by last night’s dispersal order which covered London Road, Ribbleton Lane, Blackpool Road, the A59 and Avenham and Miller Parks

A map has been provided showing a broad area covered by the dispersal order - from Ribbleton Lane to the River Ribble, and east to west from London Road to Brockholes Brow.

A spokesman for Preston Police said: “This follows incidents of disorder where police have received several calls from the public regarding juveniles setting off fireworks in the area.

"The dispersal order empowers police offices to direct individuals to leave a specified area if they reasonably believe that their presence would contribute to the harassment, alarm or distress of members of the public, or would contribute to the occurrence of crime or disorder.

"A number of stop and searches have been carried out and individuals dispersed from the area with direction to not return.

"The order is in place to prevent crime and disorder and also to keep people safe and feeling safe."

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