DOG FOUL: Bag it and bin it

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COLERAINE Borough Council, in partnership with Articlave Community Association and Hezlett Primary School worked together last Friday to highlight the problem of dog foul in their local area.

Council has come up with a novel way of drawing attention to the amount of dog foul along a busy stretch of the Mussendun Road between Articlave and the Hezlett PS.

Dave Sexton Dog Warden and Jim Allen Environmental officer have been flagging up every individual pile of foul along the grass verge.

This popular stretch of road which has recently been upgraded to become a joint pedestrian and cycle route, is also used by local school children who walk to school each Friday in their Walking Bus initiative.

Speaking on behalf of Council, Head of the Enforcement Team, Catherine McNally said “During this initiative, my staff counted up to seventy separate pieces of dog foul along this path and this is completely unacceptable.

“My team and I want to work with local communities to get the message across to dog owners about the health and safety implications of dog faeces and also that we are determined to enforce the legislation by issuing fixed penalty notices to offenders.

“At the moment it is £80 under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act (NI) 2011.”

Articlave Community Development Group Secretary, Joanna Doey added: “Dog foul is unhygienic, unsightly and causing a major problem in this area. We fully support the work of Coleraine Borough Council in tackling this problem and would appeal to dog owners in the area to clean up after your dog has fouled.”

Pupils from Hezlett Primary School run a weekly ‘walking bus’ from Articlave to school along the path, Principal Mr Peter Campbell said: “ We are so pleased to have really good paths which our pupils can use to safely walk and cycle to school. I would appeal to local dog owners to help keep these paths safe and clean for the children and all other users by bagging and binning any dog foul”.

Council has also announced that they intend to put out two temporary dog foul bag dispensers along this stretch of path. Catherine McNally continued “The dispensers are just another way in which we are working with communities, leaving irresponsible dog owners with no excuses. We will monitor the use of the dispensers and they will eventually be moved on to cover other problem areas in the Borough”.

Coleraine Borough Council advises residents and dog owners that they must clean up after their dog at all times or potential receive an£80 fine under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act (NI) 2011.”

For more information please contact Catherine McNally, Environmental Services, Coleraine Borough Council on 028 70347170 or email Catherine.mcnally@colerainebc.gov.uk. Alternatively, log on to Council’s website www.colerainebc.gov.uk