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Lisburn is Barking Mad

This petition had 506 supporters

Lisburn & Castlereagh Council are proposing to introduce restrictive Dog Control Orders which include:

- That dogs will no longer be allowed on certain land within the Council area, namely play areas, MUGAs, artificial pitches, bowling greens, tennis courts and golf courses. Access to playing fields will be restricted

- That dogs must always be kept on a lead in cemeteries, burial grounds, caravan parks and community centre grounds in the Council area

- That a dog must be placed on a lead when in open spaces to which the public are entitled to enter in order to prevent nuisance, annoyance or disturbance to a person or other animal if requested to do so by an authorised officer of the Council.

We the undersigned are totally against these proposed Orders on the following
1.       Dog Walkers use Wallace Park on a daily basis throughout the year. The Footballers use the pitches in the  Park only on a Saturday between September and April therefore in terms of usage Dog walkers have the Prior Claim including the pitches. To deny Dog Walkers and their dogs off lead for the purposes of controlled play, access to the Pitches between September to April is blatant discrimination. Wallace Park is A PUBLIC Park with Green Flag Status. and should be available to all.

2.       During early mornings & late evenings daily Dog Walkers are the only inhabitants of the Park therefore allowing dogs off lead and on the pitches is causing a nuisance to no one.  All responsible Dog Walkers using Wallace Park have full control of their dogs whether on or off lead.

3.       Dog Walkers in Wallace Park are Rate Payer not visitors.  They have paid through their Rates for the installation of the Pitches  and they pay annually for the upkeep of the park including the pitches  therefore they should be entitled to use all areas  to exercise their dogs. Should these Orders be enforced Dog Walkers should be entitled to a Rate Rebate as they are being deliberately denied use of  full Council facilities which they have paid for.
4.       All Responsible Dog Walkers pick up and bin any fouling that occurs. The environmental Committee Minutes dated 01 Feb 2018 7.4 Dog Control Initiative state " Members are advised that from 01 October 2017 to 31 December 2017 Enforcement officers continued to carry out early morning and late evening patrols covering all hot spots including parks, greenways . During the Patrols MOST AREAS WERE CLEAN AND FREE FROM FOULING ."   This clearly indicates that fouling is not an issue.

5.       Wallace Park provides a safe, well lit and well maintained,  fenced in space both for animals and humans where Dog Walkers can feel safe to exercise their dogs off lead. No other Council space in Lisburn provides this facility. Other proposed sites are totally unsuitable as they are either in the middle of Housing Estates or near busy main roads or are not secure particularly for lone female Dog Walkers on dark Winter days.

6.    The alternative area in Wallace Park proposed by the Council for use of dogs off lead adjacent to the Duck Pond is totally unsuitable as it is a swamp, surrounded by trees inhibiting  ball play, and is not lit. Dog Walkers propose that the third football pitch which is never used in front of the Play Park be exclusively preserved for the use of Dogs off lead.

7.    The Dog Water site is located on  the wall of the  Pavilion Building adjacent to the Football pitches. Dog Walkers will be penalised should their dogs cross the pitches to access water.

8.   Dog Walkers call into question whether The Environmental Committee followed the correct procedures in bringing forward this consultation. The Minutes of the Environmental Services Committee Meeting dated 01 Feb 2018 make no reference to this consultation therefore Dog Walkers contend that it is not legal and therefore unenforceable.

9.   The design and format of the Public Consultation Response is heavily weighted again Dog Walkers as it is biased and restrictive.



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