More parks for playful pooches

Photo of a ginger Labrador sitting on grass with a stick and a ball

Cessnock City Council is inviting community feedback on its plan to expand and upgrade the existing network of off leash areas across the Cessnock Local Government Area (LGA).

With approximately 34,000 registered dogs in the LGA, Council recognises that dog owners are a large portion of the community and a key user group of its open space areas.

The draft Off Leash Dog Exercise Area Plan details the upgrade of existing off leash areas in Cessnock, Stanford Merthyr, Branxton and Greta, and the addition of five more in Cessnock, Cliftleigh, Ellalong, Weston and Bellbird North. Notably, it proposes a new fenced off leash area at community favourite, Bridges Hill Park.

Following a community survey conducted throughout September 2020 via Council’s website and distributed to key stakeholders, 177 responses were received which provided valuable feedback and informed the Plan.

Council’s Acting Open Space and Community Facilities Manager, Nathan Eveleigh said the Plan addresses the main concerns identified by the community.

“Dog owners have made clear that the lack of fenced areas, locations and overall animal safety are the key concerns. This Plan remedies these issues, with upgrades to include adequate fencing and safety provisions, and five new off leash areas.”

“The Plan also provides a strategic direction for the future management of off leash areas within the Cessnock LGA,” he said.

Read and have your say on the draft Off Leash Dog Exercise Area Plan before Sunday 8 August.

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