- West Country
- 1 update
Taunton Deane has become one of the first councils in the country to ban using legal highs in public.
A Public Space Protection Order banning the use of "intoxicating substances" in public comes into force today (June 1st).
The council says it received "overwhelmingly positive" views when the public was asked about this in April.
Recent changes to the law mean local councils can now place an order like this on activities they believe are "having a detrimental effect on the quality of life for people in the community".
The order prohibits drinking, using legal highs or using any other substances "with the capacity to stimulate or depress the central nervous system" in public areas.
It replaces a "no drinking" order that applied to some areas of Taunton, and is much broader, covering Taunton town centre and areas around Priorswood Road, through to Toneway and Blackbrook Way.
Breaching the order will be a criminal offence, and offenders could be fined in court or received a fixed penalty notice. Police and council enforcement officers will have the power to demand people hand over any prohibited substances.