Rhondda Cynon Taf Council will shortly begin a public consultation process, following Cabinet’s approval, on what measures residents would like to see put in place to continue to tackle dog fouling across the County Borough.
In October 2017, RCT Council was one of the first Local Authorities to introduce strict rules in terms of dog controls, when it put in place a Public Space and Protection Order (PSPO). Following public consultation these controls were extended for a further three years in 2020 as residents felt that the order had improved the cleanliness of the streets and increased enforcement against irresponsible dog owners.
Under the conditions of the PSPO the Council must review and consider the order every three years, to ensure that the controls still meet the needs of the public – as such the Council will now once again be seeking residents’ views on how successful they feel these stricter measures have been and whether they should remain in place.
The Consultation will begin on Monday, July 10, and last for six weeks, ending on Friday, August 18.
Residents wishing to take part can do so in a number of ways and full details can be found at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/CurrentConsultations
The response from the public to the PSPO, which has been in place for a total of SIX years has been overwhelmingly positive, with over 90% of respondents in 2020 in agreement with the extension of the PSPO.
A report published by Keep Wales Tidy entitled ‘An Analysis of Local
Environmental Quality in RCT 2022-23’ shows that the presence of dog fouling on streets in RCT has remained consistent (at 10.9%) when compared to the period the PSPO was last renewed in 2020 and whilst this has increased slightly since 2021-22 from 8.9%, the latest figure (10.9%) was still 10% lower than before the PSPO was introduced (18%) in 2017. This demonstrates that the PSPO has led to a considerable reduction in the presence of dog fouling on the streets of RCT over the last six years, but also highlights that it still remains a key issue that needs to be addressed.
The existing PSPO, is based on the following rules being enforced:
- Dog owners MUST clean up their dog mess immediately and dispose of it properly.
- Dog owners MUST carry means to pick up dog mess (i.e. bags) at all times.
- Dog owners MUST follow a direction from an authorised officer to put a dog on a lead.
- Dogs are BANNED from all schools, children’s play areas and marked sports pitches maintained by the Council.
- Dogs MUST be kept on a lead at all times in Council maintained cemeteries.
View the Public Spaces Protection order 2020
The Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) also introduced an increased fine of £100, which Enforcement Officers can issue for failure to adhere to any of the above.
A separate PSPO, for Aberdare Park only, was also introduced on October 1, 2017 and includes the extra control that dogs must be kept on leads at all times in Aberdare Park. The PSPO would have superseded an 1866 by-law for Aberdare Park, ensuring that dogs have been kept on leads at all times, this existing rule, and the unique historical circumstances of the by-law.
Councillor Ann Crimmings, Cabinet Member for Environment and Leisure said: “Our sports pitches and play areas are important spaces in our communities and are used by all ages throughout the day and evenings. The PSPO controls in place since 2017 have helped us keep those areas safe for everyone to use.
“The PSPO has ensured that we have seen a marked reduction of dog mess across the County Borough, but the Council is continuing to receive complaints around dog fouling on its streets and sports pitches, which is not only unsightly, but could lead to major health consequences and I would ask residents to please think and act to ensure that these areas remain dog (waste) free.
“I know that dog fouling is a key issue for residents, and I would encourage them to come forward to take part in this consultation. We want to understand what dog controls residents would like to have in RCT so that we continue to support responsible dog ownership and tackle the issues together, building on the success so far and having a clear plan for the years ahead.”
The Council is also asking residents to report any issues they are having with dog fouling online at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/ReportDogFouling so that we can support them and work together for the safety of our community.
Find out where you currently can and can't walk your dog in Rhondda Cynon Taf at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/walkmydog.
For more information or to take part in the consultation, visit www.rctcbc.gov.uk/CurrentConsultations
Posted on 11/07/2023