It had been decided by the Council to remove the fence in Withdean Park to reduce costs in the long-term. A petition was started that has now achieved over 1,900 signatures campaigning for the Council to consider other initiatives that would allow the fence to stay.
The fence around a section of the park, originally to protect young lilacs from rabbits, has been used for years by owners of dogs, especially those in training. It has also been a place where families with young children and puppies have been able to enjoy a space in safety, knowing that the children and dogs cannot stray too far away.
Patcham Ward Councillors have been working with campaigners and the Council to broker an agreement whereby campaigners can take responsibility for the fence. Campaigners had offered to raise the funds and provide the workforce.
Cllr. Lee Wares said “Agreement has now been reached between the campaigners and the Council for the fence to remain. Campaigners will raise the funds and work on the fence and the Council will provide supervision through the Ranger teams.”
Cllr. Geoffrey Theobald added “This is a good compromise for those that want to use the park with the benefit of the fence and for the Council who can retain a facility that it promotes, whilst not having to direct funds towards its maintenance”.
Cllr. Carol Theobald commented “We are pleased that the Administration kept an open mind to this matter and for Cllr Mitchell in agreeing to support a project where residents can have a greater say and involvement over the park; a principle we have been promoting for a long time”.