Alcohol checks to be carried out at Scottish park after disorder

Alcohol checks will be carried out at the entrances to a city park following concerns over large gatherings and anti-social behaviour.

Glasgow City Council said it’s officers will be stationed at the gates of Kelvingrove Park when crowds are expected, to prevent people breaking the ban on taking alcohol in.

The local authority said the officers will be supported by police when asking people to either dispose of their alcohol or be refused entry.

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The majority of the west end park’s 16 entrances are being closed for the summer to enable crowds to be managed.

Police Scotland officers in attendance as big crowds gather at Kelvingrove Park in Glasgow

Thousands of people gathered in the park during the warm weather last month, despite lockdown measures remaining in force, and on one of the hottest days – Saturday 20 June – a large police operation was mobilised to deal with “large gatherings and disturbances”.

While there was no major incident declared in Glasgow, police said at the time that they had been forced to take action because of the large numbers of people who had gathered, many of whom were drinking in contravention of local by-laws.

Chief Inspector Morag Lister, Police Scotland’s area commander in the Greater Glasgow Division, said: “Kelvingrove Park has recently been home to some deplorable scenes of violence, disorder and anti-social behaviour, including officers being assaulted in their endeavours to keep people 
safe.

“There is a minority group who are intent on using the park for purposes other than recreation and we have been working in close collaboration with Glasgow City Council to mitigate the risk that this group poses to the park’s long-term sustainability and its thousands of other 
users.

“Sadly, those mitigation measures have resulted in the majority of the park’s entrances being locked as a result of the behaviour of this minority group.”

Councillor Anna Richardson said: “Closing gates at Kelvingrove is the last thing we wanted to do, but we have to ensure the park remains a place that everyone can enjoy and feels safe going there.

“The mass gatherings we have seen recently have caused serious concerns, not only for the lack of physical distancing being observed, but also due to frequent reports of anti-social behaviour and disorder.

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“The amount of waste that we regularly remove from the park, much of it linked to alcohol consumption, is also staggering.

“Limiting the number of entry points to the park means that on very busy days we can manage access more effectively, ensuring the park management rules are applied to all visitors.

“Taking this necessary step will help to keep Kelvingrove as a welcoming place for 
all.”

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