Cambridgeshire

Doodoowatch 'poo-shaming' map gains UK council interest

Doodoowatch map Image copyright Tash Scott
Image caption The updated map shows red dog icons where mess has been seen and green ones where it has been cleared, along with the location of bins

A village "poo-shaming" scheme designed to combat dog fouling could soon be seen across the country.

Residents in Wimblington, Cambridgeshire, hit the headlines with the interactive map showing the locations of unwanted deposits.

Creator Amanda Carlin said media attention had drawn interest from as far away as Kuwait.

In response, a "how-to" pack has been created and sent to about 60 councils and community groups.

The scheme, dubbed Doodoowatch, encourages users to report dog mess sightings.

Once logged, the poo's location is marked on an online map, alerting public-spirited locals or the district council's street cleaning team.

Mrs Carlin and other dedicated doodoo-watchers have made an instruction manual to help others join the fight against faeces.

Image copyright Amanda Carlin
Image caption Amanda Carlin, who started "doodoo-watching", says she always carries extra poop bags to clear up after pet Molly

It includes advice on how to engage the community in the project, create a map and signage, liaise with authorities and deal with negative social media comments.

Doodoowatch guides have been sent to more than 60 councils and community groups as far afield as Cornwall, Yorkshire and Sussex, Mrs Carlin said.

Hazel Walton, from Euxton in Lancashire, is part of a community group which has taken up the scheme.

"I clean up after my very large dog and it bothers me that others don't," she said.

"This is about reporting it and shaming people into doing something - anything we can do to try to change local attitudes."

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Zena Aris-Sutton, from New Mills in Derbyshire, said they run a litter-pick group in the area and have picked up 100 bags of dog mess in just one two-hour stint.

She said the Doodoowatch appealed as it had structure, comedy, enabled people to feel they are "actively doing something" and would provide information to share with the council.

Mrs Carlin said she was "delighted" others have been inspired by what they have done and they can "help them at no charge".

Image copyright Amanda Carlin/Tash Scott
Image caption The guides show others how to set up a similar scheme in their own area

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