Coastal and Visitor Area PSPO

Coastal and Visitor Areas Public Space Protection Order

The new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) will help support the Council and partner agencies manage visitor behaviour and protect our natural coastline and other popular visitor areas. Visitors can be tourists and local residents.

The order is to help ensure the Borough’s coastline and town centres can be enjoyed by everyone. Activities covered by the new PSPO include littering and pollution, fires and BBQs, dog fouling, balloons or lantern releases, and anti-social behaviour. Failure to comply can result in a £75 Fixed Penalty Notice.

The order will be in place for three years, until summer 2025.

The restrictions are based on the existing Sefton Byelaws and in line with legislation associated with the protected status of the Sefton Coast. Please note offences such as littering are already in place through existing legislation, such as the Environmental Protection Act 1990. 

Feedback from local communities, visitors and partner agencies, gained through a public consultation, has been used to shape the Order.

Some of the restrictions include:

  • Pollution: Leaving litter, dog fouling, urinating/defecating in public, or noise pollution
  • Vehicle related antisocial behaviour; either within defined car parks or taking motor vehicles outside of defined parking areas
  • Drinking alcohol in a public space after being told not to by an Authorised Officer to prevent anti-social behaviour (this is not a total ban)
  • Lighting any fire or BBQ
  • Taking a dog into a dog exclusion zone, or allowing its behaviour to cause alarm, distress or annoyance to another person
  • Setting off fireworks, balloon or lantern releases
  • Overnight stays in tents, motorhomes or caravans without written permission from the Council

To view the PSPO document please click the document below:

Coastal PSPO 2022 (pdf 2.22MB)

For further information, please see Frequently Asked Questions below:


A Public Space Protection Order, also known as a PSPO, is a power available under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

An order can be used to control certain activities in a specified area if two conditions are met:

  • That the activities have had or are likely to have, a detrimental effect on those in the locality.
  • That the effect is, or is likely to be, persistent and continuing in nature and is or is likely to be such as to make those activities unreasonable and that restrictions are justified.

Although the vast majority of visitors know how to behave, sadly there are some who can act in an inappropriate manner that cause distress and disturbance to local residents and businesses, as well as causing damage to infrastructure in the area.

PSPOs along Sefton’s coastline help the Council’s officers and its partner agencies by making clear what is acceptable and unacceptable.

The PSPO will cover coastal and visitor areas that get especially busy, like town centres.

Coastal areas means the beach and the land next to the beach which is open to the public, including land owned by other partners such as the National Trust, Natural England, RSPB and the Lancashire Wildlife Trust. This includes: 

  • sand dunes and grassed areas 
  • woodlands and marshes
  • ponds and lakes
  • promenades
  • car parks
  • play areas
  • buildings like toilets and shelters  

 Town centres included in the order are:  

  • Southport (area includes Kings Gardens, Lord Street, Eastbank Street and Promenade)
  • Formby (area includes Formby Village Centre, Andrew's Lane, Formby Bridge, Kings Road, Duke Street Park)
  • Crosby & Waterloo (area includes Crosby Town centre, Moorside Park, Coronation and Alexandra Parks, Victoria Park, St. Johns Road, South Road, Waterloo/Seafront gardens)
  • Bootle (area within the boundary of parts of Merton Road, Litherland Road, Washington Road and Marsh Lane)

Last Updated on Wednesday, August 3, 2022

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