National Trust Erddig’s ranger team has worked with tenant farmers to create a brand new designated off-lead zone near Felin Puleston.
Starting 1 February, pooches can bound, sniff, scratch and jump freely in a special zone for dogs.
It’s hoped that the new zone will encourage dog walkers to keep dogs under close control in all other areas, especially near livestock.
The ranger team at Erddig has been reviewing the dog offer and wants to make sure that everyone, whether they are dog owners or not, enjoys a visit to the historic estate.
Head Ranger, James Stein said:
“We want to get the balance right so that everyone feels welcome, so we’ve been reviewing the challenges we often face around caring for the 1,200-acre estate and farmland. From clearing up dog poo and livestock worrying to exploring special areas where dogs can run free, we’re looking at every aspect of four-legged friends visiting our estate.”
During summer the Erddig team reached out to visitors to get feedback on dogs at Erddig.
Head Ranger, James Stein continues:
“We ran several dog days at our countryside centre in Felin Puleston which were well attended. The issue of dogs is a bit like Marmite and we often feel stuck in the middle, so it was good to have those conversations with people.
“In reality, people don’t like badly behaved dogs and it’s the small minority that spoil it for everyone and that’s something that we need to address – it’s also something that impacts on our tenant farmers and wildlife across the estate.”
Taking a lead
After working with tenant farmers, the team has agreed their first designated off-lead zone at Felin Puleston launching on 1 February 2020. There’s clear signage and fencing with the river acting as a natural boundary to the area.
In addition to this, dogs are free to explore all of Erddig’s woodlands including Big Wood, Court Wood, Forest Wood, Coed Y Glyn Wood and Lewis Woods. However, the team asks dog owners to be mindful of other visitors and aware that dogs must be kept under close control at all times. This means that they must remain in sight and respond to voice commands whilst off lead.
The team is also urging dog owners to ensure that their dogs remain on a lead in all open spaces not clearly marked as a lead-free zone. This allows the team to keep the Erddig estate as an open space for all visitors to enjoy while protecting the livestock and wildlife who also call Erddig home.
By providing a dedicated area to enjoy lead free in addition to the many woodlands Erddig has across the 1200-acre estate, the team hopes this is a balance which allows Erddig to remain a special place to be enjoyed by everyone.
Erddig dog wardens
The team has been working with experts Acorn Kennels, who are contracted by Wrexham Council and other organisations as dog wardens, to talk to visitors about plans and the importance of controlling their dogs around livestock, especially in lambing season.
If you see them, do say hello, the team would love to hear your feedback.
You can also contact the Erddig estate team on 01978 355314 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org