NORTON Town Council is to ask Ryedale’s dog warden to monitor one of the town’s playing fields following reports of “horrendous” fouling.

Mayor Councillor Ray King said they did not want to stop dog owners using King George’s Playing Field but people needed to clear up after their pets.

“It is so disgusting on the playing field,” he said.

“Football teams regularly play there and it is not fair that someone has to physically go and clear up the dog mess before they can play.”

Coun King said: “I feel we should ask the dog warden to monitor the area and warn people and if there is no improvement we will have to look at other measures including further fencing or stopping public use.”

Councillor Hugh Spencer said there had been an issue with dog fouling for years.

“The problem is that we only have one dog warden for the whole of Ryedale,” he said.

“The warden has said in the past that unless people are prepared to name and shame there is little he can do, but if he does get a name he is prepared to go round to that address and warn the dog owners.”

Coun Spencer said that unless more people were given on-the-spot fines or were prosecuted the problem would continue.

“The question is whether dogs should be allowed on the sport field,” he said.

Councillor David Lloyd-Williams was concerned that someone could be blinded if they came into contact with dog faeces, as had happened to someone he knew recently. “Perhaps we should look at extending the CCTV coverage,” he said. “It will cost money but it is better than someone losing their sight.”

Councillor Paul Farndale added: “I think we should ban dogs on the playing field altogether as some owners are spoiling it for everyone else.”

The councillors agreed to write to the Ryedale dog warden and continue to monitor the situation.