Cornwall’s Dog Ban – What’s Changing?

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Cornwall council have announced the new rules regarding Cornwall’s dog ban. The new restrictions come into effect this year and will implement a more cohesive and simple policy operating across the county.

After consulting the county’s dog owners and holidaymakers in 2019, Cornwall Council decided to tweak their Public Space Protection Orders. Feedback suggested the old bans were complicated, confusing and lasted too long. The new PSPOs will be in effect from Spring 2020 for a minimum of three years, unless reviewed.

The Old Ban

Traditionally Cornwall‘s dog ban has been confusing. The majority of affected beaches were restricted from either Easter Sunday or 1st May each year. Typically the bans would last until the end of September, leaving many dog owners without easy access to a beach during the summer months. Certain towns such as St. Ives and Falmouth, were particularly affected, with all the main beaches enforcing the strictest bans.

The old bans were confusing and unclear, particularly for tourists visiting the county with their dogs. Not being able to take your dogs on the beach during the peak season was particularly frustrating, especially as many dog friendly hotels don’t let you leave your dogs alone in their rooms.

The New Rules

Cornwall’s dog ban will now operate between 1st July and 31st August only. This is a drastic reduction from nearly six months (due to an early Easter) to just the peak summer holiday season. The restrictions will also only operate between 10am and 6pm daily, in alignment with the seasonal life guarding hours.

This is fantastic news for dogs living and visiting Cornwall. They’ll now be allowed on all of the county’s beaches outside of these hours. The timings are considerate for both dogs that need walking in the morning and evening, while respecting that not everyone enjoy sharing their beach days with other people’s dogs.

Which Beaches?

The restrictions only apply for 43 beaches in the Duchy – leaving over 250 beaches and coves dog friendly all year round. Porthchapel beach near Land’s End has also become dog friendly year round, after the private beach owner requested the ban to be lifted as part of the PSPO review.

The affected beaches include Hayle Estuary, Maenporth beach in Falmouth and Kynance Cove on the Lizard Peninsula. However they will all be more accessible for dog owners compared to the previous restrictions.

Blue Flag Status

Cornwall is home to 14 beaches with Blue Flag/Seaside award status. The Blue Flag Award independently recognises environmental excellence worldwide, with over 2,000 beaches awarded this status across 36 countries. The award criteria considers water quality, as well as accessibility, lifeguard services and local facilities such as toilets and amenities.

The updated version of Cornwall’s dog ban is more restrictive for beaches with Blue Flag status. The ban will operate from 15 May to 30 September between 10am and 6pm daily. Blue Flag beaches include Gyllyngvase beach in Falmouth, Carbis Bay in St. Ives and Porthtowan on the north Cornish coast.

How do you feel about the changes to Cornwall’s dog ban? Which beaches are you excited to explore with your dog this summer?

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