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Dad’s poster efforts to clean up town thwarted

Alan Martin’s plans for a high visibility campaign were met with a mixed response from councillors
Alan Martin’s plans for a high visibility campaign were met with a mixed response from councillors

A dad has been left exasperated after his efforts to get dog owners to clean up after their mess on the school run were thwarted by council contractors. Sam Cridland walks his four-year-old son to school from the town centre, and was fed up of having to tread through or dodge the unsightly pet poo. He was so angry he decided to put up posters calling on errant owners to “show some respect” and pick up the mess, but the posters were taken down. He said:

“I went around the High Street and Jobcentre last week with posters calling on owners to pick it up. Around that area it has been clear. But when I started putting up posters with Serco’s number on them on Sunday they were taken down within an hour. It was ridiculous, because right underneath where one of the posters had been put there was a new turd. It is silly and could have been avoided. They [Serco] made all the effort to take the posters down, and the Serco guy told me it was because I had put their number on it. I was really annoyed about it.”

The issue has dogged the town with another father, Man Martin, suggesting that only a hard-hitting campaign to label Herne Bay as Turdtown would get the message across. Mr Cridland added

Sam Cridland has been campaigning against dogs’ turds in Herne Bay but was left angry after some of his posters with Serco’s number were taken down, and then dogs’ mess was left underneath where the posters used to be
Sam Cridland has been campaigning against dogs’ turds in Herne Bay but was left angry after some of his posters with Serco’s number were taken down, and then dogs’ mess was left underneath where the posters used to be

“I’m trying to make people aware. I think Serco and the council should be putting up posters themselves and have designated patrols. I know it costs money. But everyone I have spoken to in town is fed up with the amount of mess around here. Posters should go up until the problems have been addressed.”

Council spokesman Rob Davies said it is council policy to remove all flyposting. He said:

“Council and Serco staff enforce that policy consistently across the district as they are out and about. This ensures a fair approach that everybody understands. The dogs’ mess posters were removed in line with that policy and for no other reason. Dogs’ mess is a health hazard and failing to clear up after a dog is antisocial. We know that the vast majority of dog owners are responsible, but for those who are not, we would urge them to do the right thing and clean up their pet’s mess.”

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He added that Serco’s dog poo machine FIDO can be seen regularly on the streets cleaning up mess. If there are areas with a dogs’ mess problem, people can report this by calling Serco on 0800 0319091.

Herne Bay Gazette, December 4th 2014

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