Friends' plea to dog owners
FRIENDS of Page Park have welcomed stringent new rules which allow irresponsible dog owners to be fined up to £1,000.
They say dog fouling is the most complained about issue by visitors to the park.
South Gloucestershire Council has introduced new measures whereby wardens can ask dog owners for evidence that they have the means to clear up after their pet.
They will be expected to show they have bags, or other means of clearing up, even if the animal hasn't defecated at that time.
If they are unable to provide evidence, they will have committed an offence, which can result in a fine of up to £1,000 if convicted. The council can offer a £100 Fixed Penalty Notice instead of conviction.
Steph Purser, vice chair of the Friends, said: “The dog wardens are going around the park regularly and can stop people to check if they have bags on them and they will enforce this law.
“We're very pleased about it. Dog fouling is the biggest complaint we get about the park. It's really the one and only complaint we get.
“It causes problems for the pre-school in the park as staff take a long time to clear up the dogs mess before they can let the children out to play.
“Most of our dog walkers are very responsible but we have some owners who don't clean up after their pets.
“Sometimes it's not done on purpose. People don't realise if they've been looking at their phone or if their dog has run off but people need to be more aware of what their dog is up to.
“The park is a public park for all to use, it's not a dog toilet.”
Steph said some dog walkers put their animals over the wall of the park at night when the gates are locked and let them run around, which means they are unable to clear up after them.
“Once all the new railings are up, they won't be able to do that so we're hoping that will have an impact on the amount of mess in the park,” she said.