Farmer urges dog walkers not to trample crops

Dog walkers are reported to be damaging crops by walking across a farmer’s fields.

Mile Oak Farm said on its Facebook page that people had been spotted people walking dogs “non-stop” across the fields every day since the coronavirus lockdown started.

There are several footpaths across the farm but Facebook post said that too many people were trampling across the middle of fields.

The post said: “Along with many other farms across the country, we have been working very hard into the night to get our spring crops planted so the country can continue to eat.

“The wheat that we worked very hard to get planted in the autumn when the weather was horrendous is really struggling.

“To see people walking dogs all over it non-stop every day at the moment is just soul-destroying, particularly when we are on a 1,300-acre farm already covered in footpaths.”

As well as “stomping over the wheat”, dog walkers have also walked through conservation plots, scaring wildlife.

North Portslade councillors Peter Atkinson and Anne Pissaridou offered their support to spread the word for people to respect the countryside.

Councillor Atkinson said: “We took our dog up to Southwick Hill.

“People were being really sensible, apart from one large group of idiots, and keeping their distance.

“It was easy to do this within the confines of the footpaths or by waiting in a gap until the person had passed.”

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