Poo heads! Weybourne couple fined for failing to clean up after their dog at West Runton
- Credit: West Runton Beach Cafe
A campaign to shame dog owners into cleaning up after their pets in north Norfolk is beginning to pay off after a couple were fined for failing to pick up at a local beauty spot.
Louise O'Shea and her partner Martin Hipkin, who run West Runton Café, near Cromer, became so fed-up of cleaning up the mess outside their sea view property that they started posting pictures of the worst offenders on their page on social-networking website Facebook.
The images were taken from their CCTV camera and covered their faces with a giant piece of dog muck to spare their blushes.
North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) has confirmed a couple from Weybourne has been fined £60 for not bagging and binning their dog's mess in Water Lane, West Runton on January 24.
However, the ticket could only be issued after the cafe owners witnessed the offence and took down the number plate of the vehicle driven by the couple. This information, along with the CCTV footage, was passed on to the local authority.
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Louise - who last year became one of the first in the county to sign up to a new initative, the two minute beach clean, to help keep the coast clean - said: 'No one wants to walk along the road and stand in dog mess, it's just not nice.
'As the owners of a café and car park near the beach we are really keen to assist the council in any way. We have to work together to make our environment and the place we live clean and tidy.'
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The fixed penalty notice was reduced from £80 for early payment.
Councillor Angie Fitch Tillett, NNDC's Cabinet Member for Environmental Services, said: 'This just shows that if we work together we can tackle dog fouling. We want to thank Louise and Martin for their help and encourage others to report dog fouling with as much detail as possible.'
NNDC previously revealed it had received more than 300 complaints concerning dog fouling over the last three years. However, until now, it had only issued one fixed penalty ticket during the same period.
Councillor Fitch Tillett added: 'We hope this fine sends a clear message to any irresponsible dog owners out there that not cleaning up after your dog will not be tolerated by our communities.'
The beach was made famous following the discovery of the skeleton of a steppe mammoth, which last walked the earth more than 700,000 years ago, in 1990. The skeleton, one of the most complete ever discovered, was found after coastal erosion exposed a pelvis bone.
Councillor Sarah Butikofer, who represents the area on NNDC, said: 'I am delighted that by working together members of the local community and the Council have been able to take action against those who fail to clean up after their animals.
'Almost everyone loves dogs but not their mess, and this action sends a clear message to anyone not acting responsibly.'