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Dogwalker in trustees row

Park users lend their support to dog walker Tracy Dawes, pictured second left with Ted and Buttons, who objects to new rules regarding the walking of dogs on Berry Hill Park, they are from left, Graham Wellings with Jango and Rush, Jane Stewart with Meg and Lucy and Fion Leatherland with Bentley.

Park users lend their support to dog walker Tracy Dawes, pictured second left with Ted and Buttons, who objects to new rules regarding the walking of dogs on Berry Hill Park, they are from left, Graham Wellings with Jango and Rush, Jane Stewart with Meg and Lucy and Fion Leatherland with Bentley.

A professional dog walker has slammed Berry Hill Park’s board of trustees for alienating herself and others by banning them from a large grassed area.

Dogwalkers were told in a meeting with a board representative that the park had to attract more families to make money and so, discourage dogfouling.

But Tracy Dawes (53), of Bilsthorpe, says it should focus on holding big events, rather than blaming responsible dogwalkers.

“The amount of signage on there is unbelievable,” said Tracy.

“I walk on a lot of parks but I have never seen so many signs anywhere else, ever.”

Tracy said it had been explained during the meeting that the signage was there to protect picnic areas from dog mess, but most owners were careful and cleaned up after their animals.

She added: “The trustee said they could not afford to pay for a warden but when someone enquired about the income from the cafe we were told that they were not even charged any rent by the park trustees -which seems incredible.

“He then gave health and safety issues as a reason for the clamp down on dogwalkers but with two fairground rides right next to the children’s playground I would suggest they should really look at solving that first.

“I know they are a charity but why can they not raise money by staging some events, rather than charging people to use a carpark that is littered potholes.”

The dogwalker, who also runs a charity called Notts and Yorkshire Boxer rescue, said she was shocked to see the accounts for the Berry Hill Social Welfare Centre showed that on 31st December 2012 its income for the financial year to date was £3,752, against a spend of £66,015.

She added: “I can only say what a dreadful place it has become. Needless to say I shall be walking in another park from now on.”

The trustees were approached several times by Chad for comment but none was forthcoming.

 

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