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Thank You for Clearing Up after Your Dog

Troopers Hill is very popular with dog walkers and we know that most are responsible owners and clear up after their dogs.

Many also help keep Troopers Hill looking its best by picking up litter and other people's dog mess.

Unfortunately some people do not pick up and as a result dog mess is the biggest complaint raised by visitors to Troopers Hill.

Friends of Troopers Hill are pleased that so many people enjoy walking on Troopers Hill with their dogs.

In the past we have organised several 'Family Fun Dog Shows' and would like to run more in the future, please contact us if you would like to help with this.

The issue of dog poo in parks in general was the subject of the first episode of the BBC Radio 4 'Outsiders' series broadcast in March 2021. The programme is well worth a listen.

BBC Radio 4 'Outsiders' - Poo Fairy by Max Porter >>

2015 Dog Show & Campaign

Friends of Troopers Hill were awarded £350 from the St George Neighbourhood Partnership Wellbeing Fund at the Partnership's meeting in June 2015. This money funded our Dog Show on 11th October 2015 which aimed to encourage responsible dog ownership.

The money also paid for some dog poo bags that we distributed at the show. In applying for the grant we also agreed to carry out a series of surveys to further assess the extent of the problem and to establish whether the publicity around the show has improved the situation.

Results of 1st 2015 Dog Fouling Audit >>

Results of 2nd 2015 Dog Fouling Audit >>

Also in October 2015 an extra dog waste bin was installed, meaning there is now a bin at each of the main pedestrian entrances to the Hill making it easier for dog walkers to clean up after their pets.

We had previously run a Dog Show on Troopers Hill Field in 2012 and in 2013 & 2014 we helped at dog shows at Eastwood Farm.

2014 Clean-up campaign

Sadly the incidence of dog-fouling seemed to increase over the later part of 2013. We had several complaints and comments about this and it was an issue raised by the judge when the Hill was visited for a 'mystery shop' as part of the Green Flag scheme.

As a result of this Friends of Troopers Hill again ran a campaign in 2014; as part of this we carried out a survey of all users of Troopers Hill to ask for ideas to address the issue. The survey could be completed online and there was also a pdf version. People gave us this feedback about how dog fouling and lack of dog control could be addressed, this can be seen via the link below together with Friends of Troopers Hill comments on the ideas suggested:

Results of 2014 dog fouling survey >>

Children playing on the Hill are at the greatest risk from dog mess, so we were pleased when the Beavers from 159th Bristol (St Aidan's) Scout Troop who are based nearby offered to produce some clear up posters for us to support our campaign (see example above).

The Beavers visited the Hill on 9th July 2014 (photo, right) to help put up their posters at the entrances. This was part of an evening when the whole Scout Group visited the Hill, with the Cubs trying out our Tree Trail and the Scouts fixing some bird boxes they had made on trees in the Woodland. A report on the evening can be seen here.

"Thank you Beavers! I trod in poo at Troopers Hill TWICE this week! Yuck!" - facebook comment the day after the posters were put up.

A report on the first stage of our 2014 campaign can be seen here.

"It's a great job your doing there. Every time we've gone to the hill one of the kids is guaranteed to step in it:( Hopefully the culprits will be busted!" - Hill user via facebook

Following this we made an assessment of the volume of dog poo picked up and placed in the bins by weighing the bins' contents. This showed that around one third of dog poo isn't being picked up, see the full results here.

"hopefully this will wake the minority up, it does not take much to shove some poop bags in your pocket when you go out, I always have a pocket full and it is annoying when you pick up after your own dogs and other people don't" - Troopers Hill dog walker, Feb 2014

Local Area Campaign

The problem of dog mess is not of course exclusive to Troopers Hill, the 2014 campaign is being supported by the Council and the St George Neighbourhood Partnership, where dog fouling is one of their priorities. We were included in a report on the issue on the Partnership website.

At the Full Council meeting on 18th March 2014 pupils from Air Balloon Hill Primary School presented a petition of 612 signatures asking for the Council to do more to stop irresponsible dog owners allowing their pets to foul on the footpaths & the lane around the school. The pupils have produced their own posters for the area around the school such as the one seen here.

Operation Scoop

Bristol City Council are working with St George Neighbourhood Partnership to run a number of action days in the area (including on Troopers Hill) to try to reduce the incidents of dog fouling.

Council Officers and the Police work together to enforce against people not clearing up after their dogs. Officers involved are also tasked to engage with dog owners, to give advice and try to get intelligence about perpetrators and hot-spots.

"I'm sad to say that there was dog faeces everywhere and I couldn't let him run ahead and enjoy himself for fear he would run through, or worse, fall in some. My disgust peaked when I wheeled my baby's buggy through some. I know the area is used by many responsible owners but I'm just not happy to let my child run there. It's such a shame that a few lazy people spoil such a lovely place in this way." - Troopers Hill visitor by email.

Troopers Hill should be a space that everyone can enjoy safely, it is not 'a dog walking area' it is a space for wildlife and people where responsible dog walkers are welcome to come with their dogs. Troopers Hill is a great place for children to play, they should be able to run around, roll around or slide on cardboard without the risk of getting covered in mess.

If all dog owners clear up after their dogs and ensure that their dog is always under control then everyone will benefit.

"It was lovely, and the sun shone throughout. I could have done without putting my hand in dog poo though" - Work Party volunteer

Please Bag It and Bin It

 Did you know? - Bagged dog poo can be put in any litter bin - not just dog waste bins.

Please help make Troopers Hill a space that everyone can enjoy by continuing to 'bag it and bin it' and by encouraging others to do the same.

There are 4 dog mess bins on Troopers Hill LNR at entrances. There are additional bins on Troopers Hill Field. All bins are emptied twice each week.

If you find you are short of dog poo bags these are available from Julian our Park Keeper and from Friends of Troopers Hill at our events. If we are not around then ask another dog owner, responsible owners carry more than they need just in case.

"Every time your dog fouls, 'bag it and bin ití - whether it is in a park or a roadside gutter. Remember, the rain does not wash the problem away, as some lazy, anti-social people think." - The Dogs Trust

Please Report Irresponsible Dog Owners

It is an offence for a dog owner not to immediately clear up after their dog has fouled anywhere on Troopers Hill LNR, Troopers Hill Field, Troopers Hill Woods and most open areas in Bristol including pavements and all parks. Dog fouling left on the ground by irresponsible dog owners is not only unsightly, it is unacceptable and is against the law.

"The regulations state specifically, that being unaware that the dog has fouled, or not having a suitable means of removing the faeces is not a reasonable excuse for failing to clean up after your dog" - Keep Britain Tidy

To report an irresponsible dog owner please call 0117 922 2500 or email dog.warden@bristol.gov.uk with the following details:

BCC Location (where on Troopers Hill / street name or other park name)
 Description of owner
 Description of dog; breed, colour, size
 Specific times of day (if known)
 Car registration number if applicable

Dog fouling offenders can be issued an £80 fixed penalty notice or prosecuted. Maximum penalty £1,000

"It is every owner's duty to clean up after their dog. There are no excuses. Fouling is unacceptable" - The Dogs Trust

2013 Clear Up Campaign

Troopers Hill was visited as part of the 'Operation Scoop' scheme (see above) in August 2013.St George Neighbourhood Partnership also ran a clean-up campaign in the first week of April 2013, Friends of Troopers Hill fully supported this campaign and some of our volunteers were on the Hill in the afternoon to talk to dog owners. More details...

2012 Clear Up Campaign

In 2012, Bristol City Council Parks Department worked in partnership with Friends of Troopers Hill on a Dog Fouling Clean-Up Campaign.

In December 2011 and January 2012, dog faeces that had not been picked up in particular "black spots" on Troopers Hill was spray-painted by the Parks Department. This was to highlight the issue of irresponsible dog walkers.

Posters were placed at various entrances to Troopers Hill, to highlight the campaign. The Council will now be taking enforcement action against dog walkers who do not clear up after their dogs.

 Reactions to the Dog Fouling Clear-Up Campaign >>

"I hope that in 2012 no dog walkers are fined for dog fouling because they will all have cleared up after their dogs." - Susan, Chair of Friends of Troopers Hill.

Posters to Download

 Children will put anything in their mouths...

 This neighbourhood says NO to dog fouling

More Information

 www.bristol.gov.uk/dogwarden >>

 Keep Britain Tidy - The Big Scoop >>

 Keep Britain Tidy - Dog Poo Fairy >>

 The Dogs Trust: The solutions to dog fouling >>

 Environmentally-Friendly Disposal of Dog Poo >>

If you have any comments on this issue please get in touch with Friends of Troopers Hill or Bristol Parks
- details are on our Contact Page.


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