Irresponsible dog owners could be hit with £1,000 fines in Derbyshire borough

Dog owners in Amber Valley are set to be the focus of a raft of new council offences – with fines of up to £1,000.

Monday, 10th June 2019, 4:45 pm
Dog owners in Amber Valley are set to be the focus of a raft of new council offences  with fines of up to £1,000.

The borough council is on the verge of bringing in a number of new measures to crack down on unreasonable and persistent anti-social behaviour involving dogs.

In 2017, Amber Valley Borough Council approved legislation to ensure that dog owners keep their pets on leads and pick up their faeces in cemeteries.

At a meeting of the authority’s cabinet on Wednesday, June 19, councillors are set to discuss rolling this out to all public spaces in the borough.

Councillors will be looking to approve or reject consultation on the new offences.

The results of this consultation, if approved, would come back to the council in September, with rollout of the new offences coming into place from Sunday, October 20.

Dog owners will have to remove dog faeces from all public land and must be able to demonstrate to council enforcement officers that they have doggy bags – or another suitable means of cleaning up after their dogs.

In addition to this, dogs will not be allowed to enter children’s play areas within parks and open space, of which there are 94 across the borough.

Dogs must be kept on leads within the six cemeteries in the borough, at Alfreton, Belper, Crosshill, Heanor, Leabrooks and Ripley.

The council says that the restrictions are ‘to address concerns about dog fouling within public areas and the control of dogs within cemeteries and children’s play areas’.

These new restrictions would be contained in a proposed Public Spaces Protection (Control of Dogs) Order.

There would be a maximum penalty of £1,000 for those breaching the order.

Alternatively, the alleged offender may be offered the opportunity of “discharging any liability to prosecution for the offence” by paying a fixed penalty of £60, if paid within 10 days, and £100, if paid between 11 and 28 days.

A report on the issue says: “The council is satisfied that activities have been carried out in the borough that have had a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality.

“The council is further satisfied that the effect of these activities is likely to be of a persistent and continuing nature and is of such as to make the activities unreasonable and the effect of the activities justifies the restrictions imposed.”

Eddie Bisknell , Local Democracy Reporting Service