Outcry over ‘horrendous’ Sid Valley dog poo hot spots

A map of the Sidmouth hot spots for dog mess, (s)

A map of the Sidmouth hot spots for dog mess, (s) - Credit: Archant

Residents are in uproar over the ‘horrendous’ and ‘disgusting’ amount of dog mess being left on Sid Valley paths and in parks.

The Herald asked social networkers to highlight the worst hotspots in the town, after a resident posted a complaint on Facebook about The Ham recreational ground.

Scores of people then took to the site to share their views, including Anna Davey, who claimed it was becoming a huge issue, especially at The Ham, where her two-year-old daughter was unable to play because it was ‘always covered in dog mess’.

Simon Jinks said The Byes was getting worse and he thought owners should be banned from allowing their dogs off the lead in the dark.

He added: “Something needs to be done...Far too many dog owners are letting their dogs off their leads and then are too busy chatting with friends, not watching what they are doing or should I say doo-doing.”

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James Trevett dubbed Mutters Moor a ‘minefield’ and believed it was the ‘worst he had ever seen anywhere’.

Among the other ‘minefields’ highlighted by residents was Margaret’s Meadow, Manstone Avenue, Gilchrist Field, Salcombe Hill, The Knapp alleyways behind Bakers Close and Waitrose, and School Street in Sidford.

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Some residents said they would like to see more dog bins as, they claimed, there were not enough in locations such as Harpford Woods and Mutters Moor.

Jodie Perry said some owners let their pets leave a mess outside schools and Nicola Rider claimed Sidford was a particularly ‘horrendous’ hotspot for trying to dodge poo, especially with a double pram.

Katrina Lort said: “As a responsible dog owner, it really annoys me. Picking up their poop is part and parcel of owning a dog.”

Others also joined the rallying call for action over the issue with Chris Razor-Ron Vanstone calling for all owners to ‘carry their dog’s poo with pride’ and Simon Jinks saying it was time for a name and shame Facebook page.

An East Devon District Council spokeswoman said there had been no hotspot areas identified in Sidmouth in the past three years and in 2014 they had only received 17 complaints while in 2015 they had only had 16.

“Sometimes people contact us when they have seen a small amount of fouling, but our observations are that Sidmouth, as with the rest of East Devon, is in fact a very clean area.

“We know the vast majority of dog owners do always pick up.”

The spokeswoman added the StreetScene team would always clean up reported fouled areas and had not reported any hotspots for their environmental health team to follow up in the past three years.

She added, if appropriate, officers would write to people pointing out a problem to ask residents to report known offenders.

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