Thanet council is consulting on plans to create a new Public Space Protection Orders (PSPO) at sites across the isle that will either ban dogs completely or bring in strict on-lead rules from this October.
The PSPO areas will be enforced with on the spot £80 fines for anyone:
- Permitting a dog to enter land from which dogs are excluded. These exclusion areas include fenced children’s play areas, cemeteries, ball courts and tennis courts.
- Not having a dog on a lead between the hours of 10am – 6pm from 1st May – 30th September in the following locations: West Bay, St Mildred’s Bay, Westbrook Bay, Stone Bay, Botany Bay, Joss Bay. Louisa Bay, Minnis Bay (part), Walpole Bay, Viking Bay.
- Not keeping a dog on a lead 24 hours a day in the following locations: Pegwell Bay (designated nature reserve), Margate Main Sands, Ramsgate Main Sands.
- Failing to remove faeces
- Not having a suitable item to pick up dog faeces with
- Not putting and keeping a dog on a lead when directed to do so by an authorised officer
Any enforcement officer can issue the PSPO on-the-spot fine/fixed penalty notice of £80 to anyone found not to be following the new rules. If unpaid, a convicted offender could be fined up to £1,000.
PSPOs may be enforced by police officers, police community safety officers and any officers designated by Thanet District Council.
PSPOs, came into force last year under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. Similar to anti-social behaviour orders (asbos), PSPOs allow for broad powers to criminalise behaviour that is not normally criminal. They last for three years but can be renewed.
Neighbouring Dover District Council brought in PSPOs in 2015.
The Thanet initiative follows the introduction of a dog dna scheme in July and 30 new Tikspac stations providing free dog waste bags across the district.
A 28 day period for comment started on Thursday (August 10).
Thanet council says the PSPO will help it simplify existing rules, replace old legislation – which expires later this year- and control irresponsible dog owners who don’t pick up dog faeces or control their dogs.
A spokesman said: “This zero tolerance approach and enable us to take action and fine the minority of people who blight our wonderful beaches and open spaces.”
Views can be submitted via firstname.lastname@example.org before 7 September 2017. A decision on implementing a Public Space Protection Order will be taken by Cabinet on 19 September. If approved, the PSPO would come into effect on 16 October.
What is a PSPO?
Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPO ) propose to deal with a particular nuisance in a particular area that is having a detrimental effect on the quality of life for those in the local community. It can prohibit certain things or require specific things to be done.
An example of when a PSPO may be issued could be to help keep dogs under control within a public place such as a park. It may require that the dog is kept on a lead at all times and/or the dog is only allowed in certain areas. Alternatively, it may prohibit the consumption of alcohol in a specific place.
When deciding whether an order should be issued, the local authority must consider two things:
Firstly whether the behaviour is having a detrimental effect, or is likely to have this effect. Secondly, whether the effect/likely effect of the activities is of a persistent nature making the behaviour unreasonable and rendering the notice justified.
It can be made to apply to all people, or limited only to certain people and can be restricted to specific times. A PSPO can last no longer than 3 years but can be renewed if necessary. Failure to comply with the order can result in a fine or a fixed penalty notice.
If the council plans to put a new PSPO in place, it must put up a notice and publish it in a local newspaper and on its website.
The notice must tell you where the new PSPO will apply and if there’s a map and where you can see it. If dogs aren’t allowed in a park or any other area, there must be signs saying so.
Dogs on the beach
In case you were wondering what beaches your dog can go on and when, here’s the full list:
From 1 May to 30 September, dogs are not allowed at any time, during any part of the day or evening, on the following beaches:
- Minnis Bay (Main Area)
- Viking Bay
- Walpole Bay
- Main Sands
- Main Sands (Harbour end)
From 1 May to 30 September, dogs are not allowed during the hours of 10am to 6pm on the following beaches:
- Botany Bay
- Joss Bay
- Lousia Bay
- Stone Bay
- Westbrook Bay
- West Bay
- St Mildred’s Bay
Dogs are allowed on the following beaches at any time, all year round.
- Grenham Bay
- Epple Bay
- Dumpton Gap
- Kingsgate Bay
- Foreness Point
- Sacketts Gap
- Palm Bay
- Fulsom Rock
- Western Undercliff
All dogs on promenades adjacent to these beaches should be kept on a lead.