Plea for dog-free areas for kids to play in the parks

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A Buckingham grandmother has asked the town council to provide dog-free areas for children in the town’s parks in time for the school holidays.

The woman, who did not wish to be named, made her plea at last week’s town council meeting, after taking her four-year-old granddaughter to Bourton Park on a Saturday morning.

She said: “We did not see one other child in the park. We did, however, see over 30 dogs, most of which were off the lead. The new children’s play area is not fenced in and dogs were wandering around this area off the lead.

“My granddaughter was terrified when a large playful dog came bounding up to her.

“Bourton Park has an enclosed area for dogs to be exercised but there is no enclosed area for children to run about to kick a ball, or even to play on the swings, etc.”

She said some parents will not take their children to the parks due to the dogs.

And she asked: “Please could the council introduce a rule that dogs can only be off the lead in the exercise areas provided and please can enclosed safe areas be provided for children to play – not only on play equipment but also somewhere they can run and play and kick a ball?”

She told the Advertiser: “I just feel, at the moment, dogs have got more rights than children and that can’t be right.

“It’s not just about dog poo and children being bitten, it’s about children being frightened. I’m hoping the town council will do something between now and the school holidays so the schoolchildren can go and play in the park during the holidays.”

The issue will go before the environment, property and health committee on May 28.