A court order has today(Wednesday 22 February) banned 7 persistent beggars from entering Wolverhampton City Centre during certain hours and from begging anywhere within the city boundary.

City of Wolverhampton Council successfully applied for the civil injunction at the city's county court.


Granting the 2 year injunction, District Judge Paul Watson described the measure as a "last resort" after hearing that the city council and support agencies had exhausted all other avenues trying to stop their anti-social behaviour.

The order was made this morning against Kuldip Bains,  aged 44 of Sedgley, Zoe Harvey-Nixon aged 40 (address unknown), Craig Wall aged 35 (address unknown), Charlie Jenks, aged 30 of Bilston, Donna Abraham, aged 39 of Dudley, Sam Wallbank aged 35 of Walsall and Kieron Marchlewski aged 39 (address unknown).

The order bans the 7 from entering Wolverhampton City Centre except for between the hours of 12pm and 2pm each day to enable them to access services.

They are also banned from begging or putting themselves in a position where someone might reasonably perceive they intend to beg anywhere within the boundary of the City of Wolverhampton. Breaching the order could result in a custodial sentence for contempt of court.

All the individuals concerned have continued to beg despite being handed a written warning and offered extensive support by agencies in the city including the offer of accommodation and access to benefits. Some have continued to beg despite receiving accommodation, while others have refused all offers of support.

City centre businesses and the Wolverhampton Business Improvement District (BID) worked closely with the city council and West Midlands Police to tackle the problem.

Businesses were concerned that the beggars were intimidating their customers, being threatening and abusive to staff in shops and licensed premises and causing general nuisance behaviour.

At today's court hearing District Judge Paul Watson said: "This is a last resort. I am satisfied that the city council and the police have gone to great lengths to help these individuals but they have not accepted help and the opportunities to help themselves that they have been afforded."

Councillor John Reynolds, cabinet member for city economy, said: "Court action against vulnerable people is a last resort and something we would only ever consider when all other avenues have been exhausted.

"These 7 individuals have continued to beg on the streets, intimidating people and causing anti social behaviour and a nuisance despite being offered extensive support, accommodation and access to benefits.

"Businesses in the city centre approached the city council and police wanting action to tackle this problem which clearly has the potential to affect their trade.

"These are complex cases and we empathise with people who find themselves in financial difficulty, without a roof over their heads and perhaps with addiction issues. However, there is no reason to be on the streets as support and accommodation is available. If people choose not to accept help then agencies must act."

  • released: Wednesday 22 February, 2017