Posted by: Laura Hammond
Tue 17th January 2023
Amber Valley Borough Council has introduced new rules regarding dogs in certain public spaces in Alfreton, South Wingfield and the surrounding areas.
A new Public Space Prevention Order (PSPO) for the control of dogs in public spaces came into force on January 4, following a public consultation on the matter between September and November last year.
The PSPO has predominantly been designed to tackle dog fouling and ensuring dogs are on leads. However, the order also makes it an offence for dogs to enter a children’s play area.
Amber Valley Borough Council describes each element of the order as follows:
Owners are required to remove dog fouling (usually using a bag) and place it in a suitable bin. A new power introduced by the PSPO is the requirement, in public areas, to be able to show, when challenged, that you have suitable means in your possession for cleaning up dog fouling. In practice, this means that you would need to be able to show an unused bag to one of our wardens when asked. This power is designed to tackle those dog walkers who have no intention of picking up their dogs fouling.
Cemeteries and burial grounds are areas for quiet contemplation and respectful memory of loved ones and for this reason dogs must be kept on a lead when entering. The council recognises that many people may wish to take their dog with them into a cemetery or burial ground and therefore dogs are not prohibited from these areas, however it is an offence under the PSPO if the dog is not on a lead.
Young children are inexperienced around unfamiliar dogs, may be afraid of them, and are particularly vulnerable to contamination from dog fouling. To minimise the risk to young children, dogs are prohibited from entering or remaining in children’s play areas within parks and open spaces controlled and maintained by Amber Valley Borough Council. The dogs are not prohibited from the park or open space, but it is an offence if the dog enters a children’s play area.
Amber Valley Borough Council says anyone using a recognised assistance dog will be exempt from the requirements of the PSPO.
Breaching the PSPO could lead to a £100 fine.
Amber Valley Borough Council says: “The council’s community support unit will be looking to address the issues within the PSPO through education and awareness as well as enforcement, and all of our wardens, who wear official council uniform and carry identification, will be out and about on our parks offering information and advice to dog owners in addition to enforcing any breaches of the PSPO.
“A breach of the requirements is an offence and will usually be dealt with by way of a Fixed Penalty Notice carrying a fine of £100 or prosecution in the Magistrates Court.”
The PSPO applies to following public spaces in Alfreton, Somercotes, Riddings, South Wingfield and Swanwick:
You can view the full PSPO, including maps, here.
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