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Salisbury residents asked: too many takeaways and bars in city centre?

Salisbury residents are being consulted on whether new food and drink premises in the city centre should be subject to stricter rules to balance a good mix of venues with an enjoyable night out.

Residents and businesses are being invited to take part in a survey asking for their views on whether the heart of the city should become a Cumulative Impact Area (CIA).

The survey asks participants to agree or disagree with statements including ‘Crime and disorder is mostly caused by customers of the local takeaways and bars,’ and ‘the fear of crime/anti social behaviour stops me visiting at night’.

Participants are asked whether there should be more or fewer pubs, restaurants, nightclubs, off licences and takeaways.

Within a CIA Wiltshire Council can operate specific licensing policies designed to keep crime, litter and noise to a minimum, particularly where there are a high volume of premises. In such a CIA any new or varied licenses, if agreed, would be subject to limitations, unless the applicant can demonstrate there would be no negative cumulative impact on the area.

CIAs are already in place in Bristol, Bath and Southampton. Subject to consultation and agreement by councillors, a CIA in Salisbury could be in place by Christmas 2014.

The consultation comes as the city recently celebrated regaining Purple Flag Status for a second year. To achieve the accreditation cities have to demonstrate they provide a vibrant, safe and enjoyable place for a night out. A number of agencies, businesses and the voluntary sector worked in partnership to continue improving what the city can offer in the evening to achieve the accolade

Keith Humphries, cabinet member for public protection said: “Salisbury is a beautiful place for an evening out and we’re very proud to have achieved Purple Flag status for a second year. Designating the centre a CIA is another tool we can use to ensure the balance between an exciting mix of places to eat and drink and an enjoyable night out is achieved.”

Maggie Rae, corporate director said: “We’re keen to hear if local people feel these measures will help Salisbury retain its charming character whilst providing an excellent night out. The CIA is part of a suite of options that Wiltshire Council will consider using where appropriate, to ensure Salisbury remains a safe place.”

The consultation will run until Sunday, April 20. To comment on the consultation go to Paper copies of the survey are also available from Wiltshire Council offices, Milford St Salisbury.