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Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO)

Sefton Council has listened to the findings of a public consultation regarding additional dog control measures and as a result changed its proposals.

Earlier this year a public consultation was held involving a proposed Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) promoting responsible dog ownership.

Thousands of people responded to the proposals and following detailed analysis of the feedback, an amended PSPO is now being proposed.

The new proposed PSPO continues with it still being an offence of not removing dog’s fouling, restricts the number of dogs that can be walked by one person to a maximum of 6, prohibit dogs from entering enclosed playgrounds, prohibit dogs from entering marked or fenced sports pitches during specified periods. Dogs are also to be kept on a lead within defined picnic sites and family area, all public roads and footways and all cemeteries and crematoria.

Dogs are also to be placed on a lead when directed by an authorised officer to prevent a nuisance or behaviour likely to cause annoyance or disturbance to the public.

The amended PSPO doesn’t prohibit dogs from open playgrounds or say dogs are to be kept on leads in designated wildlife areas. Similarly, dogs do not need to be kept on leads in designated nature reserves and are not prohibited from designated beach areas – “dog free zones” (except for existing Dog Free Zones under current bylaws).

Also omitted is the proposal that dogs are to be kept on leads within fenced conservation areas when livestock are present and the idea that any person in charge of a dog is to have a receptacle with them to remove dog fouling.

The amended PSPO is being discussed at Licensing and Regulatory Committee on June 19, and if approved will go to Full Council at a later date.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services, said: “We actively encourage responsible dog ownership throughout the borough and the public consultation held earlier in the year looked at this in great detail.

“Through the detailed consultation we really reached out to many different groups and individuals regarding an important subject that numerous people had a vested interest in.

“In their thousands people responded which shows how much they care about their pets and our communities.

“As a result, we are proposing some changes to the PSPO to reflect peoples’ comments and this is an example of how we listen to the concerns of local residents. We will continue to work with communities and dog groups to make Sefton even more dog friendly. 

“The new PSPO is still only a proposal, and if approved will still need to be formally agreed by Full Council.”