Footballers give dog owners red card

YOUNG footballers have called foul on irresponsible dog owners who are letting their pets leave filthy mess all over pitches.Parents and officials at Trimley Red Devils have to begin every match day by donning gloves and taking a trowel and bucket to clean up heaps of dog mess before the children can use the pitches at the village playing field.

YOUNG footballers have called foul on irresponsible dog owners who are letting their pets leave filthy mess all over pitches.

Parents and officials at Trimley Red Devils have to begin every match day by donning gloves and taking a trowel and bucket to clean up heaps of dog mess before the children can use the pitches at the village playing field.

They say the situation has gone beyond a joke and is getting worse week by week – and it's time to give the dogs the red card.

Club and field officials are now appealing for residents to help catch the culprits, who are believed to let their dogs off the lead to foul freely.

Richard Kerry, chairman of the Stennett Memorial Playing Field Committee, said: "The situation is getting to ridiculous proportions.

"We have this disgusting mess to deal with every week and have to clear it all before we can even start any of the games and that takes a considerable time.

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"We cannot let the children play football on there until it has all been removed because it would be just awful if someone fell in a load of it, and then there is the disease we know it can cause.

"It is just horrible and we need to find a way to stop this happening because it is driving everyone mad."

Around 150 boys aged eight to 17 play at the field each weekend.

Mr Kerry said it was believed to be dog owners in the area who were just letting their pets off the lead to exercise the animals and then just standing at the gate watching until the dogs were done.

The management committee had decided to seek the co-operation of residents whose homes border the field and would be sending letters to them asking for their help to identify the dog owners.

Parish council chairman Hazel Blakshaw sympathised with the users of the field and would be asking Suffolk Coastal's dog wardens to visit the site.

"We need to catch the person whose dog is doing this and prosecute them and have them fined – that is the way to deter people from this," she said.

n Action is being taken to get as many cars off the roads around Stennetts Field on match days as possible after complaints that parking on pavements leaves too narrow a space for wheelchairs to get through, forcing occupants onto the road.

Mr Kerry said he had spoken to Trimley Red Devils chairman Bob Race, who had since asked all team managers to ensure parents and supporters parked on the field.

"As many cars as possible will go on the field, as long as it is not waterlogged," said Mr Kerry.

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