SHDC moves to correct information about banning dogs on beaches

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SHDC moves to correct information about banning dogs on beaches

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Following a story this week about Dog Orders on some beaches in the South Hams (not published by us!) – South Hams District Council wishes to issue a clarification – these orders are not new and dogs are not being banned from the beach.

Restrictions on when dogs are allowed on some beaches have been in place since 2014. The district council also states that their intention is to create space for all on the beach at Bigbury, after local concern.

Every three years, the council is required to review its Dog Control Orders and decide whether to renew them, and if so, whether any changes need to be made. These are rules, which dictate where dog walkers can take their dogs and how they are expected to behave when they are there.

Dog Orders are created for the protection of the public and to enable dogs to enjoy our beautiful coast and countryside as well.

The story, which was run by several news outlets last week, although not by SouthHams.com, had misunderstood the Dog Control Orders that are being proposed and suggested that this was a new ban for dogs at several popular spots. These orders are not new but are in fact existing orders that are being reviewed.

Orders preventing dog owners from walking their dogs at on Mouthwell Sands at Hope Cove, South Sands at Salcombe, and part of Bigbury beach at specific times between May 1 and September 30 have been in place since 2014. The only new aspect is that now, dog owners are required to carry the means to pick up after their pet.

In addition to this the changes being proposed at Bigbury are specifically about how the space on the beach is divided. The council "wants to enable more people to use and enjoy the beaches in the way that they would like to".

A spokesperson for the council said: “While conducting the consultation we were made aware that there are in fact three groups of people who would like to enjoy Bigbury Beach. Dog walkers, day visitors to the beach with dogs and those without dogs.

“It was important to us that we create a safe space for families with dogs to enjoy the beach with the benefits of the lifeguards being present, as well as a space for people to enjoy the beach without dogs.

“The amendments to the Dog Control Orders create these three separate spaces and we very much hope that the council will see this next week when the report goes before the full council.”

If the orders are agreed by the Council on 25 March, further maps and clarification will be issued to show exactly how the space is to be divided at Bigbury.

Main image - stock image Pixabay 

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