Dog fouling: Difficulty of enforcement

One could envisage the champagne corks popping at the Town Hall on the reporting of a dog owner being fined for failing to pick up (Scarborough News, February 19).

Unfortunately, a week later a letter from Mrs J Brown (Scarborough News, March 5), a visitor from Weymouth, comprehensively highlighted the extent of the dog fouling problem in Scarborough, and the ongoing failure of the dog wardens to make any significant noticeable impact.

Coincidentally, I had just spoken with Mr Russell Camm, Scarborough Borough Council dog warden, as a follow-up to my previous written correspondence with him.

The conversation was one of the most informatively negative ever experienced in a long business career. Let me relay to the public some of the factual written and verbal comments he made as follows:

1 He covers 317 square miles around the Scarborough borough area.

2 At best with two dog wardens.

3 Difficulty in prosecuting offenders if they state that they did not observe prohibition notice.

4 Difficulty with magistrates in prosecuting offenders.

5 No complete records kept on prosecutors. He did research his records on Holbeck and South Cliff area to find only 11 prosecutions in two years.

6 Significant number of offenders not prosecuted for reasons, given formal advice.

The aforementioned comments certainly validates Mrs Brown’s experience on her holiday in Scarborough.

Is it any wonder that the irresponsible minority of owners offending are increasing when the means of “sorting it out” is totally inadequate and not fit for purpose.

I repeat comments in a previous letter saying that if the same appropriate rigorous approach as shown to motorists was enforced a vast improvement would be experienced by residents and visitors. Councils throughout the UK hit drivers to the tune of £549 million last year, which was 20 per cent up on the previous.

I would doubt if the income generated from dog fines covered the total direct and indirect cost of dog wardens employed.

I trust that Scarborough Council will appraise and positively act on this number one public nuisance.

W Wilson-Haig

South Cliff