Dog owners are being reminded they must keep their pets on a lead in the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Gardens in Bewdley.

The small walled formal garden in the town centre that is used for weddings and community events is one of two sites in Wyre Forest where dogs are not allowed to run free. Kidderminster Cemetery is the other.

The restrictions are part of a series of new dog control orders that were introduced last October to help keep the district safe, clean and looking good.

Around 1,000 people took part in a survey about the new controls and attended a series of face to face consultations last June with the overwhelming majority in favour of introducing the new measures.

These include requiring dog owners to clear up after their dogs and always carry a means to remove waste and excluding dogs from children’s play areas, splashpad and paddling pools across the district.

Since introducing the measures on 1 October 2017 enforcement teams have been out promoting the controls and making sure dog owners are aware of their responsibilities. Leaflets have been produced to explain the measures and any residents who fail to comply with the new rules will receive fixed penalty notices.

Dog On Lead ShutterstockCabinet Member for Operational Services Councillor Rebecca Vale said: “Hundreds of people took part in what became one of our biggest public consultations last summer and overwhelmingly supported all of the new controls.

“I’m pleased that the vast majority of dog owners in the district accept that clearing up after their pets, having the means to clean up and keeping them on leads in certain areas are reasonable.

“We are fortunate in Wyre Forest to have many open spaces, nature reserves and riverside walks where dogs can be let off the lead, so long as they are under control.  The vast majority appreciate that Jubilee Gardens, with its beautifully laid out flower beds, ornamental fishpond and outdoor theatre, and Kidderminster Cemetery are not suitable places for dogs to be off the lead.”

The new dog controls are set out in a Public Spaces Protection Order which gives the council powers under the under the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

Any person found guilty of breaching the order is liable on summary conviction to a fine up to £1000. Depending on the behaviour in question, the enforcing officer may decide that a fixed penalty notice of £100 would be the most appropriate sanction.

For more information or call 01562 732528.