Victory claimed by Walton dog walkers

Victory. 'Kieran Burke, Derek Gott, Nicky Saddler, Ria Brooks
Victory. 'Kieran Burke, Derek Gott, Nicky Saddler, Ria Brooks

Campaingers are claiming victory over a parish council after it decided against banning their beloved pets from a popular walking spot.

Walton Parish Council issued a notice of intention to make a dog control order in December, which would have prevented pets being walked on the School Lane recreation ground.

It said the ban was needed to tackle the problem of dog fouling, but villagers said it was discrimination and launched a petition against it.

If it had been imposed, anyone found with dogs on the site would have faced a £75 fine or prosecution

However, at a meeting last Tuesday, parish councillors decided to back down.

In a statement released after the meeting, secretary David Plaut said: “After much deliberation, the parish council took into account the views of those objecting and decided against imposing the ban.

“It also decided to work with responsible dog owners, village residents and Wakefield Council, to find other ways of stopping this dangerous, hazardous and unpleasant problem.”

Kieran Burke, of Shay Lane, who led the campaign, but lost his own dog Alfie to epilepsy last week, was delighted that ‘people power’ paid off.

He said: “It’s a great win for democracy and a victory for Alfie too.

“It shows what can happen if people speak out about things they are not happy with.”

Mr Burke said the Express’s story attracted attention from The Guardian newspaper, The Spectator magazine and Channel 4, which wanted to make a documentary on the issue.