Swearing ban comes into force in Manchester city centre

Manchester City Council is to introduce a ban on foul or abusive language in the city centre following the success of a similar scheme at Salford Quays
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The ban has been imposed under controversial Public Space Protection Order legislation which allows councils to criminalise anti-social activities taking place within a specified area.

The ban starts today at 9am for a trial period of three months. It will be enforced by a multi-lingual team of plain clothes council officers who will issue spot fines to anyone caught swearing in English or any of the following languages – Urdu, Punjabi, Mandarin, Polish, Spanish, and Bengali.

Following criticism that the Salford Quays swearing ban did not specify which words were considered foul and abusive, officers will be issued with a list of expletives which will incur a spot fine.

The fines will vary according to the word used and will range from 50p for the mildest expletives such as bl**dy and t*sser, £1 for w*nker and tw*t, £2.50 for *rse and sh*t, £5 for the F word and £10 for the C word.

Anyone using multiple profanities will be fined for each word used and will be issued with a fine not exceeding £50 (£90 on public holidays).

Extra officers will be deployed in the city centre on match days and during school holidays.

The ban will apply to a designated zone within Manchester city centre bounded by Great Ancoats Street, Fairfield St, River Irwell, and New Bridge Street apart from Albert Square, Parsonage Gardens and St John’s Gardens. These areas will be exempt from the ban on weekdays between 9am and 5pm to allow office workers to let off steam.

A council spokesperson said : “Anyone approached by an enforcement officer should ask for identification.”

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