And so four weeks into the Police Dispersal Zone (PDZ) set up by @lambeth_council around my little patch of South London, has the six month social experiment been a success? It’s far to early to measure the effectiveness of moving idiots along elsewhere tackling anti-social behaviour, but I have been impressed with the immediate impact that the PDZ has had around SW8.

All evidence is of course circumstantial. I proud myself on being a net curtain twitcher supreme. If you’re acting like an idiot outside my front door, chances are that I have clocked you, photographed you and sent in the details to the Serious Crime Squad.

The main improvement that I have noticed is the overall calmness of the area. The nutters that roam up and down my road twenty-four hours a day (with a heavy concentration in the early hours) appear to have been dispersed..

One character in particular, who seems to be King Nutter with his own court of merry fools around him, hasn’t been seen here around here in the past month. I don’t think he’s taken up a course in basket weaving, but I wouldn’t rule out a stretch of sewing mailbags at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

And that really is the essence of the PDZ – tackle the problem from top down, and hopefully the minor problems will eventually disappear. A local drug dealer is likely to attract into the community users who don’t particularly care too much about the local environment.

After shooting up in the estate, they perhaps might be in need of a s***, usually outside my front door. With no local drug dealers, there’s also no s****ing junkies for me to take photographs of. Likewise for the winos that assembled along my road, treating the patch of land opposite as a public toilet.

Litter and disrespect for the environment is still a major issue. Palfrey Place is clear of the majority of junk for now, but a couple of bin liners appear each day, thrown out onto the street with no shame or understanding of the problem that they cause. Plenty of people like to use the word respect around here, without actually knowing what it truly means.

I find this kind of behaviour possibly on par with the nuisance that King Nutter was causing. If local people are not being responsible for their local environment, then we may as well bugger off to Wivenhoe give up now.

A similar PDZ has been in place around Waterloo. The success of the experiment has led to the scheme being extended for a further six months. It’s a fine line between creating a safe environment, and setting up a permanent semi-police state (ho hum.) If the latter means that I get a good nights sleep, then the PDZ gets my full support.

Now then – sightings elsewhere of King Nutter would be appreciated.

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