Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/06/01/barnsley_ban/
Barnsley clamps down on foul-mouthed fu*king locals
On-the-spot fines for verbal miscreants
The good burghers of Barnsley had better watch their mouths for the next month, because anyone caught effing and blinding in an intimidatory fashion could be slapped with an 80 quid on-the-spot fine.
The month of June promises to be relatively fu*k-free in the town centre after South Yorkshire Police and community organisation Barnsley Voice got together and came up with the latest initiative to tackle anti-social behaviour.
Barnsley Voice's Phil Davies told the BBC: "There is nothing wrong with swearing – I do it every day – but it is when it is targeted at somebody."
Therein lies the rub, because while common-or-garden cussing in public is not illegal, it is if some poor soul is on the receiving end.
Insp Julie Mitchell of South Yorkshire plod said: "It is important to note that some people feel upset and intimidated from hearing swearing. Therefore, it has been agreed that those found to be swearing in the town centre will be dealt with appropriately, by either advice or enforcement."
The ban is apparently aimed at attracting more shoppers into the centre of Barnsley – something which could arguably better be achieved by demolishing the place and rebuilding it from scratch.
In any case, some locals doubt the clampdown will do much to clear the air of expletives. One local summarised to the Beeb: "I think there'll be a lot of fines." ®