Lichfield District Council proposes tighter regulations for dog owners

Residents across Lichfield District are being asked their views on proposed regulations on dog fouling and dog control.

Lichfield District Council is asking for views on a plan to create a new dog control public spaces protection order.

As part of the council’s approach to reduce dog fouling and encourage responsible dog ownership, it is proposing an order that would require people to demonstrate they have the means to clear up after their pet.

As a rule of thumb, dog walkers would be expected to carry at least two bags that can be used to dispose of dog mess. If, when asked by an enforcement officer, someone does not produce a bag or refuses to do so they could receive a fine.

The order will require anyone in charge of a dog to clean up and remove any resulting dog mess in a public place, such as on a pavement or in a park or green space.

The proposed protection order would also create ‘dog exclusion zones’, which would ban dogs from being taken into playgrounds, particularly areas designed for younger children.

A spokesperson for Lichfield District Council said: “We believe this order will help us to keep the district free of dog mess. Sadly a tiny minority of dog walkers do not clean up after their pets.

“A district wide public space protection order would require anyone responsible for a dog to have bags with them and clean up any mess and put it in a litter or dog waste bin or take it home if one isn’t available. We want to make it clear to dog owners, who lack the common decency to clean up after their pets, that this will not be tolerated.

“We also think children should have space to play and know that some can be scared of dogs. This is why we want to bring in exclusion zones that will require anyone in charge of a dog to keep them out of play areas across the district.

“It would be a criminal offence not to comply with the order, which could result in a fixed penalty of £80 or even lead to a prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.

“We would stress that people with disabilities that restrict their sight or mobility are exempt, including pet owners who are registered as blind.

“Before moving ahead with the order, it is important we hear the views of local residents on these proposals.”

To find out more and read the draft dog control public space protection order, please visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/dogcontrolorder. To have your say on the proposals, please email your comments to pollution@lichfielddc.gov.uk by 5 March 2021.

Media enquiries

 Esther Epstein, Press & Communications Officer, Lichfield District Council

T: 01543 308778 M: 07834 951630 E: esther.epstein@lichfielddc.gov.uk

Dog exclusion zones are proposed in the following play areas:

  • Beacon Park’s junior play area only
  • Burntwood Park play area
  • Chase Terrace Park play area
  • Darnford Park play area
  • Darwin Park play areas
  • Hawksyard play area
  • Saddlers Wood play area
  • Stowe Pool junior play area only
  • Stychbrook Park play area

Your Police, Your Voice

Information about the survey

Staffordshire Police is inviting residents and businesses across the county to take part in a new survey designed to help the force achieve its vision of a safer Staffordshire.

The ‘Your police. Your voice.’ survey, which launches on Friday 22 January and closes on February 8, provides the public with an opportunity to share their views on crime and policing locally.

This will enable the force to get a better understanding of the issues which matter most to local communities to ensure that services and resources are being delivered in the best way to address people’s concerns.

The survey is anonymous and takes less than 10 minutes to complete. You can complete it online at www.staffordshire.police.uk/yourpoliceyourvoice until noon on Monday 8th February 2021.

If you are unable to complete this electronically you can request a hardcopy by emailing campaigns.engagement@staffordshire.pnn.police.uk

Prosecution for dog fouling offences

A man from Fazeley has been ordered to pay £1,852 after he was seen not clearing up after his three dogs.

On 9 December 2020 Staffordshire Magistrates’ Court found Rob Grice, from Victoria Drive in Fazeley, guilty of three dog fouling offences.

The case was brought by Lichfield District Council after Mr Grice did not pay the three fixed penalty notices issued to him after a council officer witnessed him not clearing up after each of his three dogs.

The court ordered Mr Grice to pay a fine of £1,320, costs of £400, and a victim surcharge of £132 – a total of £1,852.

Councillor Angela Lax, Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Housing & Health, said: “This sends a clear message to any irresponsible dog walkers, who don’t clean up after their pets, that we take this issue very seriously.”

To tackle problem dog fouling, the council drops off reporting cards to local homes in hot spot areas to get intelligence from community members.

This includes the location and the times when dog fouling appears, and a description of anyone seen not cleaning up after their dogs.

Since the introduction of the cards the council has been able to do more targeted patrols. This has contributed to a reduction of more than half of reports of dog fouling that needs to be removed across the district.

To report a dog fouling location or problem area in Lichfield District, please visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/report.

Have your say! Staffordshire County Council Residents Survey

We want to hear from you

Staffordshire County Council is committed to listening and responding to the needs of its residents, which is why we want to hear from you.

Share your opinions on your local area and the services you receive from Staffordshire County Council in the new Staffordshire Residents’ survey.

It will only take 10 minutes to complete, and your responses will help us determine what is most important to residents and what we will prioritise in the near future.

The closing date for the survey is midnight on Monday 4th January 2021.

Staffordshire County Council Residents Survey – Staffordshire County Council – Citizen Space

 

Boost your wellbeing with Park Pause activities

Be in the moment by heading out to one of the district’s parks or open spaces and have a go at a series of wellbeing activities.

A free online Park Pause booklet has been launched to help people take time in nature, to benefit their health and wellbeing and reduce stress.

Ruth Piddington, Community & Education Officer for Lichfield District Council, has achieved a diploma in mindfulness. Until recently she had been leading Health Walks around Lichfield’s historic parks, but these have been put on hold due to the coronavirus.

To help encourage people to soak up all the benefits of the great outdoors, Ruth has developed a range of exercises that incorporate her new skills.

From breathing techniques and using all your senses, to spotting colours in nature and getting up close and personal with tree bark, these are just some of the eight activities in the Park Pause activity pack.

 Ruth Piddington said: “I am really pleased to be able to share what I learnt about mindfulness with everyone.

“In this often hectic world, especially with the stress caused by the outbreak of Covid-19, taking time in nature, and to be in the moment, should be good for your health and wellbeing.

“This is why I’ve put together eight activities for everyone to try in your local parks or green open spaces. You can think of them like exercises for the brain – the more often you try them, the longer you will be able to focus, increasingly enhancing your health and wellbeing.

“And, for everyone who enjoys Park Pause, we have extra activities in a follow up booklet, so there are plenty of ways to practice boosting your wellbeing.”

To download the booklets, go to www.lichfieldhistoricparks.co.uk/parkpause.

Media enquiries

Esther Epstein, Press & Communications Officer, Lichfield District Council

T: 01543 308778 E: esther.epstein@lichfielddc.gov.uk

Warning after rise in catalytic converter thefts locally

Lichfield District Safer Community Partnership is calling on people to stay vigilant as police officers look to fight a rise in catalytic converter thefts across the district.

The warning comes as intelligence shows many of these crimes take place in broad daylight and in full view of members of the public.

Thieves target catalytic converters as they contain small amounts of precious metals which increases their value, and the price of these metals has increased in recent years.

Mark Ward, Lichfield Police Chief Inspector, said: “It’s really easy for people to overlook these crimes because many don’t give it a second glance, innocently presuming the cars are either being repaired or having their tyres replaced.

“However, this isn’t always the case and that’s why it’s important for members of the public to stay alert. Offenders tend to travel in groups of three or four and are opportunists. Within minutes of targeting their vehicle, they will have stolen the catalytic converter and escaped.

“We need local people’s help in tackling this issue, and are asking for you to look out for this type of activity and record descriptions, noting down anything that could be useful to us. If it’s safe to do so, recording the incident on your phone is also extremely helpful.”

Councillor Ashely Yeates, Lichfield District Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Engagement, added: “As well as keeping alert to anyone tampering with cars and reporting any suspicious behaviour, we are offering advice about how to protect your car as much as you can from this type of crime.

“We hope our warning will help local people to be more aware of catalytic converter theft so they can prevent their car from being targeted.”

Vehicles should be parked in highly visible, well-lit areas. Off-road parking areas or secure compounds with strong perimeter fencing, warning signs and security lighting should be used wherever possible.

A monitored surveillance system can also be an effective deterrent and crime prevention of this kind can save on costly repair bills and minimise disruption to businesses.

Marking a converter with a unique reference will help police identify the owner should it be stolen, so always make sure that property is marked.

For more ways to protect your catalytic converter, please visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/catconverter.

To report a crime or suspicious behaviour please call 101, or send a direct message to Staffordshire Police on Facebook or Twitter. You can also anonymously contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

To get reports of any issues affecting your local area, sign up to Staffordshire Smart Alert. Registration is free and you can choose which organisations can contact you, what information you’d like to get, and whether you’d like to receive messages by email, text message or voice message. Sign up online at www.staffordshiresmartalert.co.uk.

Media enquiries

 Esther Epstein, Press & Communications Officer, Lichfield District Council

T: 01543 308778 E: esther.epstein@lichfielddc.gov.uk

 About Lichfield District Safer Community Partnership

The Safer Community Partnership works to make the district a safer place for everyone. It was set up as a result of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, which requires police, local authorities, fire and rescue, probation and clinical commissioning groups to work together to protect their local communities from crime and disorder.

The partnership aims to make Lichfield District a safe and welcoming place to live, where individuals, neighbourhoods and communities take a sense of pride in where they live.

Lichfield District Street Aid    

Lichfield District Council is launching Street Aid to encourage people to ‘give small change for real change’, with the aim to help people who are sleeping on the street turn a corner in their lives.

The Street Aid fund will offer grants to help people, who are on or have been on the streets in Lichfield District, to maintain accommodation and employment, or make changes in their lives which will help them avoid returning to the streets.

The scheme offers people an alternative way to give rather than giving directly to people who are begging on the streets.

Each donation will be combined with others to provide grants for items needed to get people off the streets or help them stay off the streets. This could include paying for clothing for job interviews, a secondhand bike to travel to work, training courses, IT equipment, funding to access copies of birth certificates or other forms of ID, and more.

Organisations can apply to the fund for financial help that they cannot find elsewhere, and items will be given to the individual, rather than cash.

Councillor Ashley Yeates, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement, “As homelessness and rough sleeping has increased locally, so too has the desire of local people to do something about it.

“We know we have a caring community and we are hoping people will donate to Street Aid rather than giving directly to those on the street, as it could help people in need to get support to change their lives.

“Our housing team works hard to find accommodation for anyone who is sleeping rough locally. However, begging can sometimes exacerbate issues and prevent people from making positive steps towards housing.

“We want to end rough sleeping and street begging in Lichfield District, and launching Street Aid is one of a number of ways we are tackling homelessness.

“We have also employed a dedicated officer who is working with people who have complex needs to make sure their tenancy starts well. Spring Housing is working on our behalf to provide an outreach service to rough sleepers and local homeless people, and we are progressing with plans to buy up to five properties to accommodate people with complex needs.”

As part of Street Aid, the council is planning to install ‘tap and go’ donation points across Lichfield City. This would allow people to tap their contactless credit or debit card on the outside of a shop or business window and a machine, which is installed inside the shop, automatically debits a small, set amount from the card.

Donations will be pooled together into a Lichfield District Street Aid fund, which will be hosted by Staffordshire Community Foundation. All the money donated will go directly to helping people within Lichfield District.

To find out more and how to donate, go to www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/streetaid

Attention Local Business owners!

Staffordshire County Council currently have an offer for businesses to receive a full free PPE pack, businesses just need to go onto the website and request a pack here  https://www.staffordshire.gov.uk/Business/Coronavirus-COVID-19-support-for-businesses/Emergency-PPE/Emergency-PPE-information-for-providers.aspx

Lichfield District Council also have an information officer on the ground who has been visiting businesses throughout the whole district offering support and guidance,

LDC recently launched a love local campaign to champion our fantastic businesses in the district, there are posters online to download and more will be added soon, we also have printed packs available if businesses would like to request one https://www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/coronavirus-2/lovelocal/1