THE ‘multi faceted and very complex’ reasons for the explosion of people begging on the streets of Windsor will be the subject of a detailed strategy – to be unveiled within weeks because of the problem.

The announcement was made at Wednesday night’s meeting of the Royal Borough’s Windsor Town Forum – held at the historic Guildhall, only yards from the town’s central High Street and Thames Street where the problem has been escalating out of control for some time.

Cllr Jack Rankin (Conservative: Castle Without), chairing the meeting, said: Our society is wealthy.

“No one should have have to sleep on the street.

“It is evident to anyone who knows the Town Centre that there are more homeless on the street.

“It is difficult to understand why.”

But Royal Borough officer Craig Miller – head of community and enforcement – described the problem as ‘multi faceted and very complex’.

He said the authority had been working with Thames Valley Police, charities and support teams that cope with drug and alcohol problems to come up with a strategy to tackle the issue which should be ready for discussion by mid-November.

Part of it would involve profiling individual street people to pinpoint why they were in that situation.

He said: “We need to be careful when talking about the homeless. Some people on the street are not necessarily homeless.

“Other factors come into play.

“One drive for people to come to towns like this is to earn money from tourists.”

Deputy Mayor Cllr Dee Quick (Conservative: Clewer East) had heard that people came into Windsor on the train to beg aggressively.

She said: “If so I would hope we could be proactive in moving people on.”

Cllr Phill Bicknell (Conservative: Park) who is the borough deputy leader and cabinet member with responsibility for Windsor, said it could be explained why some people were not taking up offers of help.

He said: People might be mentally challenged or addicted to drugs or drink so normality does not reign.

“They can earn £200 to £300 a day in Windsor which seems a lot – but it is not, if it is rolling money being used to feed their habit.”

Ros Rivaz, chairwoman of Eton Community Association confirmed that her town experienced many beggars on the bridge from Windsor.

She said that some beggars now seemed to have their own established spots and one woman, she revealed, had been heard asking permission from a regular beggar to beg on her patch.