‘Selfish owners ruining Leeds park by leaving pet mess on ground’

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A mum has hit out at “inconsiderate” pet owners who she says are leaving their dogs’ poop in a popular Leeds park – and putting children’s health at risk in the process.

Sally Fairfax, 35, contacted the Yorkshire Evening Post in anger after noting the scourge of doggie-do at her local Charlie Cake Park in Armley.

Representatives of the Armley Common Rights Trust – a group of volunteers which maintains the park – have also echoed her concerns.

The pretty park is popular with families and often hosts events like teddy bear’s picnics. There are no poop-bins in the non-council run park, although there are warning notices.

Miss Fairfax, who has an 18-month-old son, Laurence, said: “When my family and I moved to Armley a year ago, I didn’t expect I’d be photographing dog mess whilst trying to make sure our son didn’t go near it.

“One piece of dog mess remains more than a month later – and there are many like it in an area of less than 300 square yards. Charlie Cake Park ought to be an ideal place to take toddlers and older children.

“I thought it was, until I realised that some of our area’s dog owners think it’s also an ideal place to take their dogs to relieve themselves, without clearing it up.

“That there are no poop scoop bins isn’t an excuse.

“If it’s such a convenient spot to take your dog for a walk, surely it’s not far to get back home to your own bin.”

Miss Fairfax praised the volunteers maintaining Charlie Cake Park but stressed “they shouldn’t be expected to police dog owners too”.

David Boutle, from the Armley Common Rights Trust, said: “At least 50 per cent of dog walkers DO do the poo pick-ups, but it’s some of the younger people with their big ‘status’ dogs that ignore it.

“We have asked politely but never forced the issue. We are just 11 volunteers and four or five them are physically limited. We raise it all the time, but how do you enforce it?”

Tony Burdin, chief executive of Sheffield Mutual Friendly Society

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