Dog ban means we can enjoy sports on our field

November 02 2020
Dog ban means we can enjoy sports on our field

Children at Compass Point Primary School are celebrating an official ban of dogs on their playing field.

The move by Bristol City Council means people can no longer exercise their pets on the South Street playing field at any time. 
However, they still have access to the designated Bark Park. 
The Public Space Protection Order prohibits dog owners from using the playing field in Bedminster both during and outside school hours. People who flout the order face fines of up to £100.
It means classes at Compass Point have free access to the field for play and for outdoor learning for the first time in two and a half years.
The playing field belongs to Gatehouse Green Learning Trust, which runs the school, but there has been a longstanding agreement that it is shared with the community outside school hours.
The park used to have signs saying that dogs were banned but these were not legally enforceable. 
Once this was highlighted in March 2018, so many dog owners began using the field that the school had to stop pupils going there because of the risks from dog fouling.
The council consulted neighbours before bringing in the ban and found 80 per cent of respondents in favour.
Headteacher Linda Brown said the school was grateful for the support of the community and was delighted the ban was now in place.
"We are so pleased that our children can now have games lessons on the field and teachers can take classes out there whenever they choose, without having to wait for it to be checked for dog mess," she said.
"It is especially important now, during the pandemic, when we cannot do PE and games indoors because of Covid-19 restrictions. 
"Thank you to the local community who overwhelmingly supported our application”