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John offers to clean up ‘Dog Foul City’

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By Fiona Reid
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John offers to clean up ‘Dog Foul City’

A LOCKERBIE resident has offered to clean the streets for free after friends labelled the town ‘Dog Foul City’.

John Shaw moved to mid Annandale last year from Carlisle and was instantly horrified by the amount of dog mess littering the streets.

He said: “The last time my friends visited they said they would be reluctant to come back. They’ve branded Lockerbie ‘Dog Foul City’ and think it could be a capital for dog mess.
“It’s an embarrassment.”

The former street cleaner wrote to Dumfries and Galloway Council enquiring if any positions were available, as a street cleaner, and says he was told at 50 he was ‘too old’ for the position.

He said: “I have years of experience and even awards and certificates for street cleaning. “I was very offended to be told I was too old, especially as I think I could do a much better job than what is currently being done.

“I have never known a town so bad for dog fouling.” In a letter to Mr Shaw, from the council, he was offered an apology if he felt in any way ‘discriminated against by the comments of council staff.’

The letter added: “If said, this is unacceptable and staff have been advised of this accordingly.” Despite the setback, Mr Shaw now plans to write to the local authority and offer to clean the streets for free – so long as the council provide all the necessary equipment and protective clothing.

Mr Shaw has a long history as a street cleaning advocate.

In 2012, while living in Carlisle, he confronted councillors with a bag of dog mess he had collected from the city’s Botcherby area – in an effort to emphasise how much mess was not being dealt with by dog owners or street cleaners.

But he was escorted from the council chambers. Responding to his offer of volunteer work, a spokesman for Dumfries and Galloway Council yesterday said: “Our council would certainly encourage volunteers to do litter picks, and currently work with a number of volunteer groups at the moment across Dumfries and Galloway.

“If the individual wants to contact the local office we would be happy to fully discuss any proposal with them.”

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