Man who set up dog exercise park in Green Belt area of Yorkshire without permission likely to be refused consent to keep it open

A dog exercise park set up on green belt land in the Rivelin Valley, Sheffield is set to be refused permission to re-open, despite 132 pleas to save it.

Sheffield City Council’s planning committee meeting next Tuesday (September 13) will discuss the proposal for land opposite Holme Head Wheel Dam on Rivelin Valley Road.

Owner Mick Hill was forced to close Rivelin Valley Dog Park after a few months because he did not have planning permission to set up the dog exercise area.

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Dog owners were hiring the field one at a time to let their pets run free inside the exercise area.

General view of the Rivelin ValleyGeneral view of the Rivelin Valley
General view of the Rivelin Valley

Mr Hill has now applied for planning permission for a fenced-off dog run with a wooden shelter and a parking area in front of an existing stable block.

However, council officers who have looked at the plan are recommending permission is refused because it is on green belt land.

It is considered to be an “encroachment of urban development into the countryside by reason of the introduction of fencing, general paraphernalia, parking and activity facilitated by the proposed use”.

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One supporter said: “Sheffield needs this secure dog park to stay open, this helps so many dog owners with reactive dogs, dogs in training, puppies can play and socialise here.

One of the wooden shelters at the dog exercise parkOne of the wooden shelters at the dog exercise park
One of the wooden shelters at the dog exercise park

“You are wanting most public parks to be dogs on lead which I totally understand but dogs do love the freedom to run around and this allows that.”

Another commented: “We are totally devastated we may lose this lovely safe heaven for our dogs. Several of us live in Stannington and we are being overrun by massive dogs being walked unleashed by their owners.

“It’s very frightening for us to walk our dogs safely now. You cannot speak to these people as they won’t listen to you. Several of us are OAPs terrified a fight could ensue.“Please, please allow this application to be passed so we can walk our dogs safely for their and our sake”.

Objectors included Rivelin Valley Conservation Group.

Another objector stated: “Rivelin Valley is a much-loved local beauty spot and should be left as such.”