Mid and East Antrim to ‘re-consult’ on dog ban zones

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Mid and East Antrim councillors have agreed to begin a public consultation on a revised list of dog exclusion zones.

The issue was raised at last Monday night’s meeting of the MEA Operational Committee, during which members examined a number of draft dog control orders.

In September, the local government authority indicated it would reconsult on proposed legislation which would have banned canines from a large number of public spaces across the borough, such as the Diamond Jubilee Wood in Whitehead.

Following a backlash over what dog owners dubbed “draconian” measures, the proposals were split into two separate draft orders.

The revised list of ban zones now specifies only children’s play areas.

Meanwhile, council officers are undertaking further internal consultation in relation to dogs exclusion from sports pitches and playing fields, members were told.

“Once agreed by council, a consultation exercise will be required lasting a minimum of 28 days. It is envisaged that officers from across the three main offices will facilitate drop-in information sessions regarding the draft orders,” a members’ report read.

“As before, the public will have an opportunity to respond via email to a dedicated email address.”

Meanwhile, the local authority also agreed to reconsult on a draft Dogs on Leads Order for Carnfunnock Country Park in Larne.

Among the proposals are a requirement to have pets on a leash between 9.00am and 5.00pm in the popular public space. This would extend to 9.00pm during July and August.