Latest Campaign News
County Council in plea for residents to report those responsible for dog fouling
Following issues of significant fouling raised by residents in early December with specific regard to routes along Sanderson Street and Parson;s Walk down to the school, County Councillors have worked with officers of the County Council who are to undertake a clearing up operation and undertake Warden visits to the areas concerned.
Some irresponsible dog owners are damaging the environment and putting children’s health at risk. Its a big problem and its not funny! Failing to clean up after dogs remains to be a serious problem in our villages despite awareness campaigns and the threat of fines. As a result of concerns by residents, including responsible dog owners our village will be targeted by inspectors and the County Council boast a series of recent successful prosecutions against irresponsible owners. The message to irresponsibe dog owner is clear:
You must bag and bin your dog’s foul. If you don’t, you will be issued with a £100 Fixed Penalty Notice or fined a maximum of £1,000. Dog foul can cause toxocariasis, which may result in nausea, dizziness and even blindness.
The County Council have the power to prosecute but they can’t be always be in the right place to catch offences happening. They need the help of the community to report offences. They feel you can report irresponsible dog owners in confidence either online at www.durham.gov.uk/dogfouling, via this link, or by calling 03000 26 0000. If you see irresponsible dog owner’s failing to clean up after their dogs please let the County Council know the date and time of the dog fouling incident, the location, description of the dog and its owner, name/address (if known).
Please clean up after your dog. It’s your responsibility. If you don’t clean up after your dog mess and you are caught you will be fined, no messing!
Challenging irresponsible dog owners
Parish Council Chair Stuart Dunn has been raising awareness of the problems caused by irresponsible dog owners.
Following complaints raised by concerned residents Stuart targeted Cornforth Lane and Parson’s Walk during the summer by highlighting the problem using high visibility stenciling. His efforts are part of the Councils support to the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign.
Stuart, pictured above setting about his stenciling work, said, ‘Dog fouling continues to be a big problem in our villages and there appears to be a particular problem on the routes down to the school. The Parish Council has no specific powers to deal with enforcement. What we can do is try to raise awareness. As part of the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign we have leafleted all households, worked with parents and children, made regular website and social media posts and continue to lobby the County Council. By undertaking the stenciling we hope that we can highlight the problem to dogwalkers and perhaps prick their consciences.
Stuart has offered the stencils and spray paint to volunteers on social media. If you would like to undertake some awareness raising stencilling please contact the Parish Clerk.
County Council introduce new dog control power
The introduction of new enforcement powers for dog control have been met with overwhelming approval.
The new powers, which will mean irresponsible pet owners could be fined up to £1,000, are part of Durham County Council’s Public Space Protection Order (PSPO).
From August to December 2016, the County Council sought public views on the proposal to implement the PSPO, and found that 80% of respondents to the consultation agreed with the proposal.
The consultation also found that the majority of those who took part supported the PSPO in the hope that it will:
- encourage responsible dog ownership
- reduce the number of strays
- create safe and welcoming fixed play space areas
- tackle dog fouling incidents
The introduction of the PSPO will mean that from 1 June 2017 the following became a fineable offence in County Durham:
- allowing a dog to stray;
- failing to put a dog on a lead when asked by an authorised officer;
- allowing dogs into fenced off designated play areas.
The existing offence for allowing a dog to foul without picking it up will continue under the PSPO. Find out more on the Durham County Council Website
County Council launch Durham Green Dog Walkers Campaign
Green Dog Walkers is a friendly, non-confrontational way to change attitudes towards dog fouling. The County Council believes that the majority of dog owners in our county are responsible and pick up after their pets. Green Dog Walkers was developed to give responsible dog walkers an identity, increase the availability of dog poop bags and act as a silent reminder to irresponsible dog owners that they need to pick up after their dog has fouled.
The Green Dog Walkers campaign was the idea of a local community group (Community Green Initiative) from Denny and Dunipace in Scotland who approached Falkirk Council for advice and support to help develop their idea. Green Dog Walkers sign a pledge to always clean up after their dogc arry extra dog bags to give to other dog walkers who don’t have one handy
Those who have taken the pledge are recognisable by the Green Dog Walkers logo worn in the form of a badge.
Want to sign up to become a Green Dog Walker? Down load the County Councils leaflet and send it off to the County Council.
Background to the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign
In the summer of 2011 the Parish Council and Coxhoe Community Partnership undertook a Household Survey as part of the preparation of the Coxhoe and Quarington Hill Parish Plan 2012-2017 or Parish Plan 2.
87% of Coxhoe respondents thought there were problems with dog fouling and 83% had problems with litter. 63% experienced problems with vandalism. In Quarrington Hill more residents experienced problems with 98% being concerned with dog fouling, 95% with litter and 89% with vandalism.
In view of these perceptions and because the Parish Council itself has no specific powers in respect of the environment it was considered that the Parish Council could work with Partners and the community through a public campaign. Proposals were placed in the action plans that accompanied the Parish Plan document which was adopted by the Parish Council in September 2012. Proposal C56 of the Coxhoe Action Plan and QH46 of the Quarrington Hill action place provides for such village based campaigns.
In October 2014, as part of plans for the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign, the Parish Council circulated a leaflet entitled ‘Please help put a stop to dog fouling in Coxhoe! Advice contained in the leaflet can be viewed in the Advice and Guidance section below.
In November 2014, Durham County Council launched their biggest ever campaign against fly tipping. This has been publicised as part of the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign and you can find out details on this page.
About the Campaign
The ‘Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign’ is a campaign covering the whole of the Parish area and includes the villages of Coxhoe and Quarrington Hill. It is intended that there will be general initiatives covering the area as well as local initiatives in the villages of Coxhoe and Quarrington Hill.
We all want our villages to be free of litter, fly tipping, dog fouling and vandalism. That aspiration is the aim of the campaign. We want our villages to be clean and attractive places in which to live, learn, play, work, shop and visit. The responsibility for street services is Durham County Council who have powers not only to clean streets but to take action against those who break the law and litter our streets. The County Council can do a great deal to improve our villages but times are tough and resources are becoming scarcer. As members of the community we have duties and responsibilities as well and the condition of our villages is partly within our control. Most of the problem is within everyone’s own control. This campaign is about asking the community to play their part while providing advice where possible and educating ourselves on what we can do as individuals, and as communities, to improve our environment.
The Campaign will therefore include:
- General plea for residents, businesses and visitors to play their part
- Adopting a partnership approach to work with partners including the County Council, Police, Community, Partnerships, businesses and residents with the aim of improving our environment
- The setting up of this webpage to promote the campaign and provide information and advice with updates through The Parish Facebook page
- Providing posters and leaflet drops on key issues and communicating with people through the Coxhoe Chronicle
- Encouraging people to report environmental crime to appropriate issues while challenging the behavior of others
General Advice and Guidance
Generally the Keep Coxhoe Clean Campaign advises the community to take responsibility for our improving our environment. ‘How can you help’, you might ask. Well you can do the following:
- Take your litter home or put it in litter bins throughout the villages, remember even a cigarette end is litter
- Make sure you household waste is placed in you appropriate bin
- Clear up after you dog if you own one
- Challenge people who blatantly drop litter or let their dogs foul the footpath or report them to the County
- Council if you do not feel able to
- Report any vandalism you see to the County Council or your local Councillor, and if you actually see it happening, Report it to the police
- Do not park your cars on grassed areas as this churns them up and looks unsightly
Specific Guidance on dog fouling is provided on the Parish Council leaflet which was issued to all householders in Winter 2014.
Durham County Council Advice and Guidance
There is a great deal of advice and guidance on the website of Durham County Council. In particular check out the advice in the following links:
Durham County Council Neighbourhood Wardens
You can find out about the work of County Council Neighbourhood Wardens and download their most recent reports from the Neighbourhood Warden reports section of the Durham County Council website.
You can access current County Council Campaigns on the links below:
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