Call to stop dogs fouling in kids’ park

Pringle Park playground, Selkirk

Pringle Park playground, Selkirk

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One of the main fundraisers responsible for ensuring the Pringle Playpark became a reality is urging dog owners not to allow their animals to foul up the popular facility.

Opened in June 2014, the park has proved very popular with local children, but the abundance of dog fouling in the area is becoming a worry.

Sheila Cochrane, treasurer of the Selkirk Play Park Project, said: “With the Easter holidays coming up, there are going to be a lot of children going to the park.

“But some dog owners are simply not taking responsibility for their animals and are allowing them to foul in the kids’ play area, and they don’t pick it up.

“I realise we are as well screaming at a brick wall, but all we are asking is that they don’t let their dogs into the play area. It is a big park.

“What we have there is a fantastic asset to the community, and it’s up to the whole community to look after it.

“We worked really hard to raise the funding for this park, with proceeds from the Selkirk Hill Run, and donations from individuals and businesses, which still help with the running costs – for instance, our liability insurance is £900 per year.

“We are really proud of the park, so let’s keep it that way.”

Sheila said that between the Play Park Project committee and Scottish Borders Council, they do their best to keep the place tidy, but their job is not being made easy.

She added: “I see that Scottish Borders Council is about to reinstate dog wardens to the region.

“It would be good if they could include Pringle Park in their travels.”

New signs have been put up, with guidelines on how to keep the park in tip-top condition.

But there is more to Pringle Park than dog dirt.

The park was awarded the Nancy Ovens Award last year – an annual award that recognises and encourages contributions made by individuals, community groups, local authorities and others to the provision of good quality play experiences in outdoor settings.

It celebrates the life and work of the MBE who campaigned for a child’s basic right to play.

And now a plaque celebrating the award has been set in a new stone dyke, built free of charge by Keith Riddell of Thomas Riddell Builders.

Sheila said: “The plaque and the dyke look really good, and we’d like to thank Keith for this generous donation.”