Dog lead protest petition - vote in our poll

PUBLISHED: 08:00 13 February 2014 | UPDATED: 09:05 13 February 2014

Archant

A DECISION to introduce a dogs-on-leads policy in a Clevedon park has prompted hundreds of people to sign a petition against it.

Clevedon Town Council resolved last month to install signs at the three entrances to Herbert Gardens advising dog owners to keep pets on a lead while using the area. This followed complaints about dog fouling and animals running loose in the park off Hill Road.

However, the decision has caused uproar among some users of the gardens who have set up a petition calling for the decision to be reversed. It also suggests the council instead installs signs clearly stating only responsible dog owners are welcome in the park.

The petition will be available in homes near the gardens, Clevedon veterinary surgeries and Aaron’s Pets in Old Church Road until February 21.

Ruth Salisbury, of Linden Road, has used the gardens for 30 years and regularly walks her three dogs there.

She said: “There has been no contact from the council with people who use the park on a daily basis.

“We have experience of being in that park with dogs but also with children having picnics and playing games. The dogs-on-leads idea is ludicrous as the park is used by elderly and disabled people who want to let their dogs off the lead.

“Hundreds of people have already signed the petition and they are all users of the park, not just dog owners.”

According to Ruth, a survey of people in Herbert Gardens carried out during four weeks in September and October showed 773 adults using the park and 28 children. Out of the adults, 90 per cent were with dogs and, out of those people, 60 per cent were over 60.

However, Clevedon Town Council chairman Patrick McNeill said: “Herbert Gardens is for the benefit of all the people of Clevedon not just for people walking dogs.

“A survey by one of the residents found that there are only 28 children to 773 adults using the park, most of them walking dogs.

“That begs the question of whether children are too frightened to use the park because of the dogs.”

■ Do you think dogs should be kept on leads in Herbert Gardens? 
Vote in our poll.

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