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Dog walkers banned from letting pets off their leash [21/08/2009]
Following a series of complaints, dog walkers are going to be banned from letting their pets off the lead in all but one corner of a Teesside park.

In Albert Park, Middlesbrough Council will enforce the new rules with wardens after recent reports of dogs biting, scratching and knocking people over, fighting other dogs and fouling children's play areas, reports the Gazette.

Owners could be slapped with an £80 on-the-spot fine or be taken to court if they do not adhere to the rules, but animals on a lead will still be allowed elsewhere, except in playgrounds.

A nursery group has cancelled all trips to the park due to safety fears about dogs running loose.

Councillor Paul Thompson, executive member for Streetscene, said the council has received 13 complaints about dogs in Albert Park this year alone.

Albert Park was donated to the people of Middlesbrough in 1868 by Henry Bolckow, one of the founders of the iron and steel industry on Teesside.

The park covers an area of 30 hectares in the centre of the town.

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