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Issue:- 13 June 2013

"BAG IT AND BIN IT" SAYS MP FOR SOUTHPORT AS DOG FOULING ON THE RISE FOR 1ST TIME IN 10 YEARS

AS the dog population sits at approximately 8 million and is only set to grow so too is the problem with dog mess. For the first time in ten years a rise in dog fouling has been reported and with 64% of people considering it to be the most offensive litter item, something needs to be done to tackle the problem. Dr John Pugh, MP for Southport, is this year lending support to The Big Scoop, an initiative to be launched on 14 June 2013, by Dogs Trust and Keep Britain Tidy with the help of celebrity campaigner Ben Fogle to urge people to not only collect their dog's mess but dispose of it properly too. Dogs Trust approached all MPs asking whether the issue of dog fouling is affecting their constituents and the overwhelming feedback was a resounding yes. Says Dr John Pugh, MP for Southport:- "Dog fouling is a matter which is raised on a fairly regular basis whether directly in emails, phone calls and letters or when we go out canvassing the streets. I can point out that it is also a matter which directly affects our own office! It is clear that fault lies with a few irresponsible owners; the vast majority of dog owners in Southport are responsible and always remember to 'bag it and bin it. I support The Big Scoop as an excellent initiative to highlight the problems of dog fouling and urge people to take responsibility for their dogs." The Big Scoop will engage with children, Councils and park wardens to raise awareness of the importance of responsible dog ownership. Children will be asked to show their support and don specially designed capes transforming them into Scooper Heroes and Councils will be supplied with free poo bags and literature on the issue. Celebrity supporter Ben Fogle adds:- "Thousands of pounds are spent each year on ensuring public spaces are kept clean and this could all be so much easier if dog owners remembered the simple message to 'Bag it, Bin it.' Sadly it's becoming a recurring sight to see bags of dog mess hanging from tree branches, fences, gates, basically anywhere but in a bin. It's a two step process and one which all dog owners need to be on board with. After all we all know that the Dog Poo Fairy doesn't exist!" Activity will start on 14 June 2013 and Scooper Heroes and Council led activities will be arranged to garner support for The Big Scoop. To find out more please visit:- thebigscoop.org.uk.

Law Society Excellence Awards now open for nomination

THE Law Society is inviting legal professionals to enter the Excellence Awards 2013. Now in its seventh year, and bigger than ever before, the event showcases some of the brightest minds and most innovative firms in England and Wales. This year, the focus is on individuals and teams across the legal sector who are setting new precedents in the profession.

Law Society Vice-President Nick Fluck said:- "If you or your team are breaking new ground, if you have shown great innovation, if your work has been outstanding, we want to hear from you. Now is not the time for modesty and playing down your achievements. By entering the Excellence Awards, you can build your reputation, achieve the respect of your peers and spend some well-deserved time in the spotlight in return for your hard work. This year's expanded event at the Park Plaza Hotel in Westminster is hoping to see first hand the kind of innovation and talent that drives the profession forward."

There are seventeen categories in the 2013 Excellence Awards. New awards for this year include Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion, Excellence in Pro Bono, Excellence in Marketing and Communications, Excellence in Business Development and Innovation, and Excellence in Exporting Legal Services.

The remaining categories for teams are The Lexcel Award for Excellence in Practice Management, Legal Sector Alliance Award for Excellence in Environmental Responsibility; Excellence in Client Service; Excellence in Learning & Development and the CQS Award for Excellence in Conveyancing Practice.

Categories for individuals are: The Law Society Gazette Legal Personality of the Year; Legal Business Woman of the Year; Solicitor Advocate of the Year; Junior Lawyer of the Year; Solicitor of the Year (In House and Private Practice) and Lifetime Achievement Award.

Nominations are now open until August 9 2013. Visit the website for more details.

The shortlist will be announced on 16 September 2013. The winners will be announced at a gala awards dinner on 22 October 2013, at the Park Plaza Hotel, Westminster Bridge, London.

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