DOG-WALKERS can spend more time on Southsea beach after restrictions on their pets were changed.
Portsmouth City Council's head of environment Cllr Dave Ashmore approved plans to reduce the restricted period for dogs on Southsea beach between the Royal Marine statue and Southsea castle, as well as at the Hotwalls.
The pets will now be allowed in these areas from October 1 until April 29, which is a month longer than the previous public spaces protection order (PSPO) that banned dogs on the beach from the end of March.
Cllr Ashmore said: 'In response to resident feedback, and after a public consultation, we will be amending the PSPO to extend the period that dogs are permitted on areas of the beach.
'From next year, dogs will be allowed on the beach from October until the end of April. Once the order has been signed, a new map for the area will be created and the signage amended.'
Many dog-walkers agreed that the changes were welcome but only if people were responsible for their pets.
Southsea resident, Pat McIntyre, 66, added: 'A lot of people have dogs, it seems like everyone does so I'm sure they will make use of the extra time. But I do see a lot of people leaving dog's mess. I've seen it once on the beach.'
Maureen Lewis, 70, agreed. For the Eastleigh resident, who comes into Portsmouth about once a week, there was good reason to keep the restrictions in place. 'It's handy changing it but I was happy anyway with the time restrictions,' she said.
'It's good to keep them in place. If I am on the beach I don't want dogs all around. And not everyone cleans up after their dogs.'
Visitor to Portsmouth, Brian Fuller, 72, from the Cotswolds said: 'Those dates fit the restrictions where we live. It is good to extend the period but I am a responsible dog owner. As long as the owners are responsible it's fine. I think not enough picking-up after dogs goes on.'
Currently the fixed penalty notice for breaking the order is £100.