Plea to keep
dogs under control in the countryside
AS the weather starts to
warm up, the CLA in the North is asking dog owners to keep their
animals either under strict control or on leads while on walks in
The call comes in the midst of the lambing season, when pregnant
ewes can abort if they become stressed by loose dogs. Birds that
nest on the ground and other wildlife are also at risk, with their
young vulnerable if parents are scared away.
CLA North Director of Policy & Public Affairs Douglas Chalmers
said:- "The majority of farmers and landowners are happy to
welcome walkers who adhere to the Countryside Code. Most people are
very understanding and walk with their dogs on leads near livestock;
but there are some who do not even consider doing this. Dogs should
always be under close control when walked on farmland, and unless
the dog stays closely to heel, this normally means that it should be
on a lead. A lead should always be used when close to livestock."
Mr Chalmers is also reminding dog owners to clean up their pets'
mess because of a deadly parasite which can be picked up from grass
infected by dog faeces.
Mr Chalmers said:- "There may be no obvious symptoms in a dog,
but the effects of the parasite Neospora caninum can be devastating
in cattle and there is no known treatment. Even if there aren't any
animals visibly grazing in a field, they may do in coming weeks, or
the grass may be cut and used as feed through the winter."
Neospora caninum affects mainly cattle, dogs and other animals such
as foxes, although it can also affect sheep, goats, deer and horses.
The parasite lives in both dogs and cattle, but only reproduces in
dogs. It can be transmitted to cattle which graze on grass infected
by dog faeces. Once inside a cow the parasite is deadly, often
resulting in abortion or the birth of premature, impaired or
The CLA is campaigning for the Government to provide clear guidance
to dog owners setting out their responsibilities and enable better
understanding of the impact their animals can have on livestock and
farming practices. The Association also wants the myriad of rules
relating to dogs on different types of access land to be simplified.
Data obtained by Farmers Guardian and the National Sheep Association
under Freedom of Information requests to UK Police forces says there
were 739 dog attacks on livestock in 2012, up from 691 in 2011.
There were 537 incidents of sheep being attacked and injured in 2012
compared to 301 in 2011.
guidance will boost brownfield development whilst protecting green
belt and votes" according to DTZ
THE UK's Government's new
National Planning Practice Guidance, which came into effect on
Thursday, 6 March 2014, suggests a shift in the balance between the
development of greenfield and brownfield sites, with economic and
Planning Minister Nick Boles' statement and the associated
publication of National Planning Practice Guidance indicates a
two-pronged approach to steering and delivering development. His
statement that housing need/viability should not outweigh protection
of Green Belt will appease Conservative Councils but frustrate house
builders currently obtaining planning permission at appeal on this
This is countered by measures to promote and enhance the viability
of brownfield development. It indicates that Councils should look at
the different funding mechanisms available to them to cover costs of
bringing brownfield land back into use and to take a flexible
approach in seeking levels of planning obligations and other
contributions to ensure viability. In many cases this is likely to
mean a reduction in affordable housing provision at brownfield
However, the measures provide a significant boost to the owners and
prospective developers of brownfield sites, particularly those with
substantial remediation and enabling work costs.
Andrew Teage, Associate Director of Planning at DTZ in Manchester
comments:- "Landowners and developers should now take the
opportunity to speak with their local planning authority about the
costs and constraints to developing brownfield sites and the
financial assistance available. This may be in the form of
subsidising site clean-up and infrastructure costs or reducing the
burden of planning obligations such as the proportion of affordable
housing in residential schemes. Overall, it is welcome that the
Government has indicated fiscal and planning gain relief towards
brownfield land development, whilst many people will support the
Minister's reiteration of Green Belt protection. The acid test,
however, will be whether sufficient housing to meet the country's
needs can realistically be delivered on brownfield land."
So what do you our readers think
about this? Please email your views and ideas related to this
issue to our newsroom via:-
STUDY WITH THE
WIDNES Vikings are offering
a unique opportunity for students to combine their passion for Rugby
League whilst earning a BTEC National Diploma in Sport (Performance
and Excellence) in the outstanding facilities at the home of the
In the second year since its inception the ground breaking
initiative has already started to bear fruit for the club with the
progression of Matt Whitley, Ryan Ince and Ted and Jay Chappelhow
all progressing into the club's 1st Team environment whilst studying
alongside their training obligations.
The course enables players to not only pursue academic
qualifications but also train in a full time environment, a feature
unique to the Widnes Vikings' Academy programme. The benefits of
combining Rugby League development and education are many
► Increased training and contact time with
► Faster progression in professional Rugby
► Achievement of academic qualifications
to gain entry onto University courses.
► Development opportunities for later
Students will study in the first class facilities at The Select
Security Stadium being taught by the highly qualified and
experienced staff of the Widnes Vikings. Students will study a range
of topics including:- Sports Nutrition, Sports Coaching,
Sports Psychology and Technical and Tactical skills for sport.
19 units will be studied over 2 years utilising a unique virtual
learning environment and will equip students with the pre requisite
UCAS points necessary to obtain a place to study at University and
work towards careers including:- Sports Coaching, Sport
Development, Strength and Conditioning and Fitness Instruction
The course is designed and aimed to address the needs of aspiring
professional Rugby League players who want to pursue their ambition
of playing professional Rugby League.
This is a fantastic opportunity for players of all abilities to be
part of an exclusive Rugby and education environment and be part of
developing the future of Widnes Vikings Rugby League club.
For further information about the course please contact Head of
Youth Performance Phil Finney by
Physio Alistair Extends
His Vikings Stay
WIDNES Vikings have made
another important extension to its Sports Medicine Department as
Alastair McFarland put pen to paper on a new deal. McFarland,
aged 24, has been working alongside Widnes Head of Sports Medicine
Andrew McDonough since October 2013 and after this successful period
looking after the Academy players, the former Glasgow Caledonian
student has been rewarded with a new contract which means he'll be
with the Vikings for a further 12 months. "I have been
delighted with the way Alastair has fitted in to our medical team in
his five months with us so far... He has picked things up extremely
well and is doing a great job of overseeing our Academy setup. He
has also stepped up with the first team and is taking on greater
responsibilities week by week. He has impressed not only myself but
the rest of the staff and the players. I'm sure he will go on to
prove himself as an excellent physio here at Widnes Vikings."
McFarland, who graduated with top honours in 2013, said:-
"I've really enjoyed my time at the club so far, it's been really
easy to fit in as we have a great bunch of people here. I'm looking
forward to the next twelve months and the season ahead."
Last month the Vikings brought in
Joe Booth as McDonough's Assistant Physiotherapist.