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Child’s letter highlights dog fouling issue in Lincoln

A letter from a Lincoln school girl to the City Council about dog fouling prompted the authority’s Chief Executive to take action.

Sophie Davenport (7) wrote a letter to Andrew Taylor describing the issues she faces walking to her school, Westgate Academy, each day due to dog mess.

She wrote: “Every day I see dog droppings on the pavement. Quite often I nearly stand in it.

“It looks disgusting, it stinks and can spread germs. I think that we should do something about it.

“If you have any spare time please could you walk with me and my mummy?”

After receiving the letter, the council CEO decided to take up the offer and walked to school with Sophie and her mum, Karen, on December 18.

Chief Executive of City of Lincoln Council Andrew Taylor reads Sophie's letter with mum Karen outside her school. Photo: Stuart Wilde
Chief Executive of City of Lincoln Council Andrew Taylor presents Sophie with his response to her letter outside her school with mum Karen. Photo: Stuart Wilde

Andrew Taylor said: “Sophie is right and it is appalling that she has found it necessary to raise this with me.

“The vast majority of dog owners clear up after their pets, but others are irresponsible and there can be no excuse.

“Not to do so is illegal, unpleasant and above all unhealthy. Sophie has simply asked me ‘why?’

“Next time you don’t clear up, for a moment just stop and think how you would explain this to her and so many others.”

Karen added: “It was all Sophie’s idea about what to write the letter on. My friends are always saying about it and how it gets on the wheels of their prams. In the dark nights you don’t know what you are standing in.

“It’s not because I don’t have a dog – even responsible dog owners don’t like it.

“We need to educate people that not picking up after their pet is unacceptable.”

The City Council said it is an offence to not clear up after your dog on any public land under the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996, which includes commons, public places and car parks.

Failure to clear away the mess can result in a fixed penalty notice being issued or a fine of up to £1,000 if convicted in a court.