Have your say over dog control orders for Fishbourne Channel

Residents will soon get the chance to have their say on a new version of the controversial Dog Control Order for Fishbourne Channel.

Chichester District Council said a consultation period would start next month for the new order, which relaxes initial plans to put all dogs on leads on specified footpaths in Fishbourne.

The new Dog Control Order (by Direction) states only dogs causing a disturbance would be required, under the direction of a council dog control officer, to be put on a lead. This means owners of well-behaved dogs would not be penalised.

Chichester Harbour Conservancy (CHC) has said it does not object to the proposals. At its last meeting on January 20, conservancy member and Fishbourne district councillor Adrian Moss said: “I think this is a victory for commonsense. My message to the council was to make sure there is a proper consultation.

“It is important we get support for this.

“I want to say well done for getting this as it is. People in the village have been quite vocal about the dog order.”

CHC set up a sub-group to look at the dog order. It said it did not object to the new order but urged the council to attach some conditions.

It said appropriate and accurate information should be readily made available to dog walkers and footpath users, and CHC would assist the council in providing the information.

It also said the new order should be reviewed if necessary once more data about how dogs disturb feeding birds becomes available.

The third condition is to amend the new order so it is reduced to cover only the footpaths immediately adjacent to the harbour’s edge.

CHC chairwoman Louise Goldsmith said: “I think we should thank Adrian. We owe him a lot. We broke new ground and have two working groups now.

“This is now the way of working for the future. It’s good to start off with success. Fishbourne meetings are a lot quieter.”