RESIDENTS are set to play a key role in whether a controversial dog-walking ban in the Wyre Forest is overturned.

Pressure is mounting from some local dog owners on the district council to drop its policy of banning people from walking more than three dogs at a time.

Now a new survey has been launched by the council to check if people support the policy or want it scrapped.

The council brought in the ban in October under a Public Spaces Protection Order on the basis that their original public consultation, which involved 877 responses, had shown residents in favour of a limit.

But since then a local petition which claims the ban is disproportionate and not based on evidence has been signed by nearly 3,000 people.

It has gone national and won support from the Kennel Club, the Dogs Trust charity, in the House of Lords, and from a campaigning group called the Manifesto Club which argues that open spaces are being over regulated.

The council had built in a review of the dog-walking limit for March and has now launched appeals for public feedback.

The petition was created by dog owners Linda McKenzie and Lisa Taylor who said: “We have been shocked by how arbitrary decisions are made that affect people's everyday lives.

“West Mercia Police offered no evidence of incidents within our area being caused by multiple dogs under the ownership/care of one person and WFDC own Enforcement Officers offered no evidence either and yet the PSPO was implemented.

“On further research, we were aghast at other PSPOs from all over the country that criminalise behaviour that is in no way criminal under British Law.”

They have also won the support of Lord Tim Clement-Jones who is tabling written and oral questions on their behalf in the House of Lords.

The council says the latest survey is an opportunity for residents to have their say on rules to tackle dog fouling and the three dogs rule.

People can comment on new restrictions which require owners to put their dogs on leads around Stackpool and Hurcott Pool.

Councillor Helen Dyke, cabinet member for culture, leisure and community protection, said: “When we implemented the orders in October we said we would review them and go back to residents to check they are happy with how they are working.

“I urge residents to get involved by completing the surveys on measures that help keep the district a safe, clean and green living environment."

To share your views, visit by 5pm on Wednesday, February 3.