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DOG BAN: Number of places in Sefton to become dog free

DOG BAN: Number of places in Sefton to become dog free

Dogs will soon be banned from a number of public spaces in Sefton.

In 2017, the council introduced a range of restrictions, including banning dogs from enclosed play areas and requiring them to be kept on leads in some areas.

The rules also said dogs couldn’t enter sports pitches during certain time periods, and limit the number that could be walked by one person.

At a meeting held virtually this evening, Sefton’s Licensing Committee voted to renew the rules under a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO)  – with a new one added.

Public Health and Housing Manager Steve Smith told the meeting: “The reason we choose to use a PSPO is otherwise we would have to rely on very limited bye laws, an inability to tackle dog fouling in all areas or to issue any dog related fixed penalty notices.

“In which case our only recourse is prosecution which would leave dog owner with a criminal record.”

He also said there had been “significant vandalism” and sign removal in north of the borough, and that signage will be updated, with maps in some sites for “greater clarity”.

Anyone found breaking the rules can be given a Fixed Penalty Notice of £75.

The following dog rules are to be reinforced:

The council will continue with punishment for not picking up dog poo
The number of dogs that can be walked by one person is now restricted to a maximum of six
Dogs will now be banned from entering enclosed playgrounds
Dogs will now be banned from entering marked or fenced sports pitches during specified periods
Dogs must be kept on the lead within defined picnic sites and family areas
Dogs must be kept on the lead within all public roads and foot ways
Dogs must be kept on the lead within all public cemeteries and crematoria
Dogs must be placed on a lead when required by an authorised officer, to prevent nuisance or behaviour likely to cause annoyance or disturbance to the public

A proposal for dogs to be kept on leads within open playgrounds was met with concern from councillors, so this is to be “considered further” and will not be added yet.

Public spaces in Sefton where dogs will be banned:

Ainsdale Village Park (playground)
Bedford Park, Birkdale (both playgrounds, and football/games area)
Botanic Gardens, Churchtown (playground)
Bowersdale Park, Seaforth (all-weather pitch and playground)
Copy Lane Park, Netherton (playground)
Duke Street Park, Formby (playground, tennis courts, and bowling green)
Hatton Hill Park, Litherland (football pitch, playground, pavilion, and bowling greens)
Hesketh Park, Southport (playground)
Hightown Children’s Park (playground)
Killen Green Park, Netherton (playground)
Kings Gardens, Southport (playground and bowling greens)
Marian Gardens, Netherton (playground)
Moorside Park, Crosby (bowling green, playground, multi-use games area)
North Park, Bootle (playground and skate park)
Orrell Mount Park, Litherland (playground and ball courts)
South Park and Kings Gardens, Bootle (playgrounds and multi-use games area)
Victoria Park, Waterloo (playground, football area and tennis courts)

Documents on Sefton Council’s website say a “period of grace will be allowed before recommencement of enforcement”.

Mr Smith told the meeting: “I’d be reluctant to give out an exact time frame for that but at least a minimum of month or two months.

“We would need to be satisfied that we’ve got the message out there and relevant signage in place.”

Words: Kate Lally, Local Democracy Reporter

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