Dogs banned from controversial Ottery field

DOGS were banned from Winters Lane Playing Field last week.

DOGS were banned from Winters Lane Playing Field last week.

A compromise bid to give the animals a small, fenced off strip of the controversial site was scrapped by East Devon District Council's (EDDC) executive board.

The controversial Ottery field was the only area in East Devon yet to learn its fate in a re-vamp of regional dog control orders.

Councillor Ray Bloxham has acted to subdue "bad feeling" in the town over the protracted issue, and championed the compromise to board members. He felt it would "allow everyone who currently uses the field to keep on using it."

Cllr Graham Brown felt a fenced-off strip was the "right solution" to meet the needs of dog walkers and children. He was adamant the field should be dedicated to children, but said dogs had always used it in the 50 years he has known the area.

"This is a play field for children," insisted Cllr David Cox, and labelled the dog- walking zone idea as "crazy" and slammed local campaigners.

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To implement the compromise proposal, EDDC would have had to pay as much as �3,500 to fence an area off.

Five board members voted in favour of a complete ban, while four backed the compromise. The decision will be ratified at a full EDDC council meeting on Ocotber and should come into affect by the end of the month.

Read a full account of the meeting at today.