Now that spring has arrived and the temperatures are slowly creeping upward, more people are using the wonderful green spaces Sutton Coldfield has to offer. Unfortunately, this often coincides with the number of small parcels left suspended in bushes or lining popular paths.
A number of users of Sutton Park have contacted us at Royal Sutton News regarding what appears to be an increase in the number of people bagging but not binning their scooped dog poo. While we understand that the vast majority of dog walkers dispose of their pet’s faeces responsibly, the concerns of those reporting on the numbers of little bags do seem to be valid.
One Boldmere resident and frequent runner in Sutton Park commented on social media:
“Running in the park this morning I counted at least 20 plastic bags of dog poo left by the side of the path. Cinder path towards Chester Rd the worst. What is going on? Be responsible dog owners! Disgusting and a hazard.”
Other park users have said that they have been verbally abused when confronting people dropping their bags into the bushes.
We contacted Royal Sutton Coldfield Town Council but they simply said:
“Birmingham City Council is responsible for Sutton Park, therefore responsibility for dealing with the problem of dogs mess in the Park lies with Birmingham City Council.”
And so we contacted John Porter, Park Manager at Birmingham City Council whose only comment, bizarrely, was no comment. Eventually, we got the following from a BCC spokesperson:
“Dog owners and dog walkers have a responsibility to pick up after their canine companions and dispose of their mess responsibly, by putting it in the nearest waste bin. We all have a personal responsibility to help keep our city tidy – after all you wouldn’t tie bags of dog mess to trees or shrubs in your own garden.”
They also confirmed that canine waste can be disposed of in any rubbish bin as long as it is securely bagged up. An interesting point with some people complaining that there are too few dedicated dog waste bins in the park.
A member of the Sutton Park Committee confirmed that they would like to see repeat offenders prosecuted – not disposing of dog waste correctly does carry a maximum penalty of £1000 – but how realistic that may be with the current resources available is questionable.