A DISPERSAL order has been put in place in Southend to prevent crime, disorder, and harassment.

Officers will have the power to move people away from the area and individuals can be arrested if they do not comply or return to the area within a certain time period.

The order covers the city centre shown in the map, south of Queensway and north of Western Esplanade and Marine Parade.

Echo: The dispersal order area in Southend city centreThe dispersal order area in Southend city centre

Inspector Thomas Neilson said: “This order has been put in place to ensure everyone in Southend today remains safe.

"I want to make sure the local community can continue their daily lives without fear of disorder or anti-social behaviour and therefore my officers will have extra powers until 6am on Sunday morning to prevent disturbances occurring.

"You will see an increased visible policing presence within the areas covered by the order this afternoon and into this evening but we’re here to keep you safe, so please don’t be alarmed.

"We regularly patrol the area Southend city centre area and work closely with partners to tackle anti-social behaviour."

The order is in place from 2pm today, Saturday May, until 6am tomorrow, Sunday 8 May.

If you have concerns about anti-social behaviour in your local area, you can submit a report online at essex.police.uk or use the live chat button to speak to an online operator between 7am-11pm

Alternatively call 101 and always call 999 in an emergency.