Revamp of 'out of date' park byelaws to be discussed

The Brett Drinking Fountain

New byelaws could be introduced to cover all Ipswich parks - Credit: Charlotte Bond

New byelaws protecting Ipswich parks could be introduced this year if it is successfully adopted by town leaders and the government. 

Ipswich Borough Council executive committee is recommended to adopt the byelaws this week which focus on protecting the environment and wildlife at Ipswich parks, as well as tackle anti-social behaviour. 

The proposals were backed by two-thirds of Ipswich residents and businesses in a public consultation to change the "out of date" rules which were first introduced in 1983.  

Among the new measures is the ban on releasing lighted sky lanterns, a ban on tampering with any life-saving appliances provided by the council and a requirement for written consent to use metal detectors.

This is in addition to keeping some original restrictions on cycling, dog-walking and use of play areas in parks by those over certain ages. 

The new proposal alters some of these - the age restriction for children's play areas has dropped from 15 to 14, for example. 

The results of the online consultation show that 67% of the 126 responses agreed with the proposals.

A report into the results of the public consultation is on the agenda to be discussed at an executive council meeting on January 11. 

Sausage dogs were dressed in their finest halloween costumes for a special walk in Christchurch Park

A dog control PSPO is being discussed by the council - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

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It has been recommended that Ipswich Borough Council take the next steps to adopting the new byelaws, which would see a statement of assessment published and an application submitted to the Secretary of State to approve the new rules. 

The byelaw covering the control of dogs in parks is soon set to be repealed with a separate public spaces protection order (PSPO) planned to cover the issue. 

The statement of assessment states: "The current byelaws are out of date and are no longer fit for purpose.  

"There are also different sets of rules for different locations.  

"The objective of the proposed byelaws is to provide a contemporary set of rules which can consistently be relied upon in all the relevant locations as a basis for the effective and equitable management of the pleasure grounds and open spaces in the borough." 

If approved - first by the council meeting and then the Secretary of State - another opportunity will be given to the public to comment on the proposals before they would be established.

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