Dog mess rise could lead to control orders

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By Nailsea People | Thursday, February 03, 2011, 11:00

DOG owners could be forced to keep their pets on a lead at recreation and sports grounds in Nailsea following complaints about increasing levels of faeces being left on the pitches.

North Somerset Council is to launch a consultation on introducing dog control orders at The Grove playing fields at St Mary’s Grove, Greenfield Crescent playing fields, land at Frith Way used by Nailsea Town Football Club and land at Nailsea and Backwell Rugby Club.

Currently people can let their dogs roam free when walking them on the playing fields.

But if the new legislation gets introduced, it would mean that all dogs would need to be kept on leads.

A consultation is due to get under way shortly and local residents are being asked to give their views on the changes.

Nailsea Town Council asked North Somerset to launch a consultation on introducing a dog control order at The Grove playing fields last year following a surge in complaints about the level of dog mess.

The land is owned by Nailsea Town Council and managed by Nailsea Playing Fields Association (NPFA) and is used by a variety of sporting clubs.

It is used by Nailsea United Football Club, Nailsea Juniors and Nailsea Cricket Club, all of whom have complained that dog mess is often left on the pitches by people using the footpath which runs across the field.

Members of the sports clubs often have to inspect the pitches before each match and make sure they are clear of mess.

It is hoped that by introducing a dog control order, owners would keep their pets on leads and ensure any mess was picked up. A number of dog bins have been installed in the area and signs erected asking people to keep their dogs to the path.

Nailsea Playing Fields Association chairman, Maureen Brady, said: “This land is primarily used as a set of sports pitches and we have a lot of youngsters that play junior football at The Grove.

“Members of the sports club have to go over the pitches before they play to make sure they are clear of dogs’ mess.”

Nailsea Town Council has asked for the consultation to prompt a public debate on whether dog control orders are needed at The Grove and possibly in other areas of the town.

Nailsea Town Council clerk Ian Morrell said: “We have had complaints about dog mess not being picked up at The Grove and from other parks and open spaces in the town.

“We wrote to North Somerset Council asking for it to conduct a public consultation on dog control orders. Most dog owners are responsible and do clean up after their pets but often the sports clubs have to clean the pitches up before games can take place.

“It is hoped that by keeping dogs on a lead it will be easier for their owners to locate and clear up any mess. We would like people to feedback their views to the consultation.”


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