Action proposed to stop deadly dog attacks on sheep at Telscombe Tye

Telscombe community flock
Telscombe community flock

Options to stop dog attacks on sheep at Telscombe Tye are due to be put to the public.

The area has grazing rights for a number of sheep and Telscombe Town Council own and manage a community flock of 100 ewes.

While the town council encourages the public use of the Tye, including dog walking, between January and November 2017 a total of 31 ewes were killed, while 50 lambs were also lost, either from a direct attack or abortion due to the stress of an attack on a ewe.

Despite local measures to try and prevent dog attacks, incidents continue and a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) is now being proposed to help tackle the issue.

Lewes District Council is set to consult on three options for the wording of a draft PSPO.

This course of action was approved by cabinet members on Monday September 17.

Isabelle Linington, cabinet member for environmental impact, described how the number of attacks were ‘worrying’ and said: “We just can’t allow that to continue.”

She described how PSPOs were ‘a bit controversial’ and not something the council ‘introduced lightly’.

After the option is chosen the council would have to consider how to enforce the terms of any PSPO and one of the ways would be to use Neighbourhood First.

Officers explained that although Neighbourhood First operatives could issue a fixed penalty notice they did not have powers to require an offenders from giving their names and addresses, however they often do work closely with Police Community Support Officers.

They said any enforcement of a PSPO would see attempts to educate take place before any fines are issued.

Paul Franklin, cabinet member for waste and recycling, said: “There’s a huge amount of people who do look after their dogs and if the report is publicised they can give us more information.”

The consultation will ask key stakeholders for their opinions, while an online survey will be available for members of the public. Copies of the survey will also be made available at Telscombe Town Hall.