Posted: Wed 21st Oct 2020

Appeal made for dog owners to keep pets under control at popular Deeside fishing pond

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Oct 21st, 2020

An appeal has been made for dog owners to keep their pets under control when visiting a popular Deeside fishing pond. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The Rosie pond at Wepre Park, Connah’s Quay, has been blighted by problems over the last year, including animals jumping into the lake, chasing and killing ducklings and damaging fishermen’s equipment. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

A senior councillor has now warned owners to follow the rules in the country park or face being fined. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

It comes after members of Flintshire Council’s ruling cabinet agreed to renew a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) to tackle dog control issues across the county for a further three years. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Deputy council leader Carolyn Thomas told her colleagues enforcement officers, who can issue £75 fixed penalty notices, would be patrolling the area to ensure people pick up their dogs’ waste and put them on a lead if they are causing a problem. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Connah’s Quay Angling Club, which leases the pond from the local authority,  recently fenced off the path running round the water’s edge – with anglers only permitted access. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The fencing was erected as a temporary measure in late May due to the need to maintain social distancing as per the Welsh Government’s Covid-19 guidelines. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

But speaking after yesterday’s (Tuesday, 20 October) cabinet meeting, Cllr Thomas, the council’s portfolio holder for Streetscene and countryside said it was hoped a permanent dog exclusion zone could be created in future. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

She said: “I wanted to highlight at cabinet the issues that the Connah’s Quay Angling Club, who have managed the fishing club at The Rosie at Wepre Park for the last 50 years, have had with uncontrolled dogs jumping into the lake causing a nuisance to people fishing. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“They have been working with officers from Streetscene, public protection and countryside over the last year dealing with issues and have recently erected a fence as a boundary to create a dog exclusion zone. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“I am hoping it may be included as a fenced off sports and recreation area as soon as possible but in the meantime the normal rules apply, including dogs need to be under control, owners need to clear up any mess and can be fined if they do not adhere to this. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Streetscene officers are aware of the issues at the Rosie and regular patrols will be undertaken.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The move to put up fencing caused some frustration amongst the local community. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The angling club said parts of the fencing and associated signage had been torn down and damaged on a “daily basis”, despite the council supporting the creation of the boundary. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Cllr Thomas said the success of the renewed PSPO covering the whole county would be based on public education rather than how many fines are handed out. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

It follows criticism of the fact that just three penalty notices were given out in the last three years under the dog control order. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

She said: “I also wanted to point out that the success of the dog control PSPO is not how many fines have been issued but how clean an area is and aware people are of the PSPO. It is about education as well as enforcement. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Also, when the officers are on patrol in uniform, it is less likely that dog walkers will not comply with the local rules and it is difficult to catch people not clearing up after their dogs. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Enforcement is timed to coincide with busy periods of dog walking and when intelligence is received about a regular offender so it is important that residents contact Streetscene if this is happening so a profile can be built up.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Cabinet members also backed the extension of a PSPO people from drinking in public places at the meeting. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter (more here). ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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