Dog ban would be ‘discrimination’
DOG owners have reacted angrily to the prospect of North Somerset Council banning man’s best friend from roaming freely around certain parks and fields.
The proposed idea would see dogs being forced to stay on leads or banned altogether to ensure sporting facilities and other parks are kept free from dog mess.
In Nailsea, dog control orders are earmarked for Greenfield Crescent, Grove and Fryth Way playing fields as well as the rugby pitches off Engine Lane.
But although the plans are only at the consultation stage, many dog owners have reacted angrily to the ‘unjust’ idea with readers challenging council staff to walk with them and show why they are necessary.
Chris Perry and Tim Boodrie, who use the Engine Lane pitches by Nailsea and Backwell Rugby Club regularly to walk their dogs, said the vast majority were being punished for things they were not responsible for.
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Mr Perry said: “We understand the rugby club’s concerns and there are people out there who let their dogs foul and don’t look after them.
“But we feel discriminated against. We don’t ban alcohol or take away the licence from a club, bar or pub because of misdemeanours by a few users. Instead we have antisocial orders, which is what we should be introducing for dog owners.
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“Why tar everyone with the same brush when it is just a few? We should be reporting these people responsible. To introduce the orders for everyone would be unjust.”
Questions have also been raised as to why the orders will apply to some areas and not others.
Mr Perry said Golden Valley playing fields, used by schoolchildren, and Millennium Park were as likely to attract problems as any other dog-walking areas and yet are not included in the council’s proposal.
Other areas across the region which may become subject to control orders include Coleridge Vale Playing Fields in Clevedon, Glebe Field in Wrington and Tickenham Village Field.
The public can have their say on these during a consultation which will run until June 30. Comments can be made online at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/dogcontrolorders2012 or can be left at local libraries.