Confusion had arisen surrounding the rules on drinking alcohol in a public place in the City of Westminster following a tweet from the Met Police’s Football Unit on Wednesday, May 18.
The post implies that street drinking in Westminster is illegal due to a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) – meaning that the usual party thrown by Sunderland AFC fans on the eve of a Wembley appearance in Trafalgar Square would be in doubt.
The tweet said: “A warm welcome to travelling Sunderland and Wycombe supporters for this weekend.
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“Please be aware that due to the Public Space Protection Order street drinking is prohibited in all of Westminster.
"There are lots of licensed premises to enjoy a drink. Good luck to both teams."
However the Westminster City Council website gives clarification on the rules, saying that the Controlled Drinking Zone (CDZ) in the PSPO does not ban street drinking.
But it does make it an offence for anyone who, without reasonable excuse, fails to surrender any alcohol in their possession when asked to do so by a police officer, police community support officer, or authorised person from the council.
This means that Black Cats fans will be able to consume alcohol in Trafalgar Square on Friday night (May 20) but they could face fines and prosecution if they fail to give up their alcohol when asked to do so.