Islington Council has installed specially constructed benches for its resident hardcore street drinkers.
The benches have been designed so "the eight to 10 men who frequent the area can drink and chat in peace," and lean inwards as this is apparently the best position for "adult drinkers". Ashtrays, bins, and a low wall for privacy have also been installed as part of the £1 million regeneration scheme for the area leading up to Old Street Station.
The architectural team behind the benches have made a detailed study of the area, including "analysis of which trees' branches are favoured by pigeons relieving themselves." Today's Guardian quotes them as saying: "Some people would like to see the street drinkers go but just because you drink on the street doesn't mean you're dangerous. We want them to feel good in a place that is right for them. The way the benches are going to work would mean a group of five to 10 men can sit around and communicate."
In the future Londonist would like to see the scheme taken to the next stage, with specially constructed pedestals to allow easier shouting at cars and a vending machine stocked exclusively with Tennents Super and Diamond White.