Dog owners urged to 'clean up their act' as football club faces poo 'epidemic'
PUBLISHED: 12:00 06 August 2019 | UPDATED: 12:18 06 August 2019
A football club groundsman has slammed irresponsible dog owners for not picking up their pets' faeces, which has been left scattered across a village field which is used to host matches.
Long Ashton Football Club stalwart Davy McGimpsey believes the amount removed by players is 'nothing short of disgraceful' and it is a problem the club faces 'every week'.
He said the issue at Long Ashton's Community Centre, where the club plays and trains, is 'major and dangerous' and he is urging people to 'clean-up their act'.
Davy said: "The problems with dog poo left on the pitch is worse now than it has ever been.
"It has become an issue before training and we have to pick up a lot of the waste before we can even attempt to play.
"We have had to stop matches due to faeces being left on the field, and I couldn't count the amount we had to pick up on one hand before a game in July.
"Genuine dog walkers clean up, but this is an epidemic.
"We've invested in a shovel to get it all up and 'no dog fouling' signs have been installed at the centre to help tackle the problem."
Davy first took to social media to address the issue in April, but some owners have paid scant regard to his plea.
This prompted Davy to question if dogs should be banned from the field.
The football club's players, aged 16-60, compete with clubs from across the West Country, and members practice on Tuesday evenings at the centre during the summer.
He continues: "The other issue is dog poo is normally left right by the community centre's play area.
"People need to understand how dangerous this is, especially if children end up picking it up.
"There are dog bins dotted around the centre, and, for whatever reason, some people don't think about using them.
"It's just not nice, and there are now people in the club who just refuse to pick it up.
"It annoys us, this group is something great which runs in the community, and it is not the centre's problem to deal with.
"It's simply unacceptable, and it begs the question, should dogs be allowed on the village field at all?"
In addition to its pleas to dog owners, the club has also put a ban on plastic bottles in an attempt to reduce waste on the pitch.