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Residents complain of churned up heath where they like to walk their dogs

Bury St Edmunds residents have complained that their local park was left looking like a ‘World War One battlefield’ following a cyclo-cross event last weekend.

Hardwick Heath hosted the Eastern Cyclo-cross League last Saturday, paying the council £200 for its use.

One local, Stuart Allison, who walks his dog on the 55-acre heath, told the Bury Free Press: “This is the second year it has been held at Hardwick Heath. I complained to my local councillor about how it was left last year,” he said.

“This year it was raining and, to be honest, it is a total mess. The local people who use the heath are up in arms. The damage up there is terrible and in some places the mud is inches deep.

“Near the pond there is a slew of mud that looks like a World War One battlefield and there is one path used by people going to the hospital which has been turned into a river of mud.

“At the moment it is a hazard. This morning I met probably 10-20 other dog walkers and every one of them complained about it. For the council this is a money-making exercise, but that shouldn’t overcome the objections to the event. If they have to hold it there, they should do it in the spring,” added Stuart.

A St Edmundsbury Borough Council spokesman said: “While we have received a number of complaints and we do acknowledge that some of heath is a little damaged, it is not dangerous and should be back to normal in a few weeks.

“We have listened to residents’ concerns and we will explore alternative options with the organisers of the event for next year,” he added.

Michael Lawson, secretary of West Suffolk Wheelers, which hosted the event. said: “Obviously the wet weather on Saturday meant the grass on the heath was cut up and we can understand that people may be concerned, however from our experience at our previous events and those others across the region, the grass will recover nicely over the next few weeks,” he added.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

26 comments

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bendertherobot [1471 posts] 1 week ago
28 likes

Stuart Allison has zero concept of what a world war 1 battlefield looks like.

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brooksby [2646 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

So did the organisers agree to make good and failed to do so, or did the council fail to make them agree to make good?

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OldRidgeback [2813 posts] 1 week ago
29 likes

My grandfather fought in WWI and was deeply affected by the experience. He told my mum that having to retrieve the dead and injured from the battlefield under the cover of darkness was one of the worst experiences of his life. He was lucky and lived to tell the tale, which is why I'm here today keying this in.

I have my grandfather's WWI medals and on remembrance day I always have them with me and think of the horrible experience that he and his comrades endured. I don't bother with a red poppy as his medals have far more personal value.

To be honest I find this person's comments about a patch of earth resembling a WWI battlefield deeply offensive. He should be ashamed, especially given the timing, but probably doesn't have the intelligence to be.

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davel [1873 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

"For the council this is a money-making exercise, but that shouldn’t overcome the objections to the event."

No, it shouldn't. And doesn't. Judging by the comments from the council, it is reason and perspective that overcomes the objections to the event, you melodramatic whiner.

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burtthebike [1188 posts] 1 week ago
20 likes

Like a WW1 battlefield? So shell craters, waist deep mud and dead horses and men scattered around. That must have been some race.

To be honest, I'm getting a little fed up with dog walkers, who assume that the world revolves around them and their mobile turd dispensers.

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Woldsman [196 posts] 1 week ago
13 likes

Yes, it’s come to a pretty pass when an Englishman can’t easily take out his animal to shit all over this green and pleasant land. 

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mtbtomo [246 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

The grass will regrow in a few weeks. Not like parks and heath's are competing with Chelsea flower show is it!

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pdiddy [1 post] 1 week ago
4 likes

Totally over the top anology but some arrangement to powerhose paths used that are left caked with mud is definitely reasonable.

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SculturaD [30 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

Typical spoil sports that want things for their own purposes and not prepared to share or play with others.

It's Grass & Soil FFS, it will self repair. Get over it.

Oh they'd rather have kids on motocross bikes destroy it or have louts using it as a drinking spot with broken glass scattered for their dogs paws.

Some moaning faced gits are only happy when they're rocking the boat.

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cyclisto [307 posts] 1 week ago
8 likes
burtthebike wrote:

To be honest, I'm getting a little fed up with dog walkers, who assume that the world revolves around them and their mobile turd dispensers.

This

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beezus fufoon [945 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

should look nice in the springtime when all the poppies start to flower though

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Simboid [81 posts] 1 week ago
11 likes

Simple solution- ban dogs from parks. Find a friggin field for your furry faced faeces fountain’s frolics.

While they’re at it ban extendable leads on all shared use cycleways, bloody lethal tripwires.

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PapaSmurf [30 posts] 1 week ago
14 likes

Nothing like the Somme where my Grandfather fell, his body was never recovered because of the devestation and mud, no treesjust barbed wire, bodies and mud.

Dont ever say a little inconveinience is like that hell hole where so many died so young!

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Deeferdonk [66 posts] 1 week ago
11 likes

Typical lycra louts, digging trenches, laying barbed wire and leaving artillary craters everywhere.

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stonojnr [14 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes

the picture in the Bury press, shows, as youd expect, very little damage, just an obvious course line, Im sure everyone has been to a CX race thats become an absolute mud bath and resembles a ploughed field, this certainly doesnt look like it was at all, and there is also clearly acres of green space for the walking poop machine to do its business.

sadly local councils do listen to grumpy dog walkers, far too much IMO, as I think we lost one very good local CX course from similar complaints

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maviczap [94 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

There were the same complaints by locals after a cyclcross event in an Ipswich park, we're not that far from Bury at Edmunds.

Same old problem people don't want to share these public spaces, but the bigger events held in Ipswich bring European teams over, so bring money to the town with extra visitors. Usually there's plenty of spectators, it something different from the Sunday football.

As the councillor said it doesn't take long for the grass to regrow, and no one knows there's been event.

 

 

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KevM [47 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes

Poor choice of analogy for an article published on Remembrance Sunday...

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davel [1873 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes
Deeferdonk wrote:

Typical lycra louts, digging trenches, laying barbed wire and leaving artillary craters everywhere.

The truce game of football halfway through
gave it away; it was played to a sporting draw and we didn't get humped at penalties.

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burtthebike [1188 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes

As well as the close pass series, perhaps road.cc could have "whining locals" series.  I'm sure it would be popular.  We could even have a vote to elect the whiniest whiner of the year, with an appropriate prize of a BSO from Halfords.  I'd chip in a fiver to crowdfund it, as long as it was presented with suitable publicity.

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wellsprop [442 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes

No it didn't.

Yeah, it probably naffed up a bit of grass - so what.

At worst, some grass will need reseeding.

I think that's a fairly small price to pay to be able to host a sporting event once a year.

Instead, everyone could just sit inside and increase the 65% adult overweightness.

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wycombewheeler [1234 posts] 1 week ago
4 likes

I doubt it was any worse than municipal playing fields at the end of the season. With the key difference being that it's a one off leaving time to recover, and not continual damage as the grass tries to grow back.

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twinklydave [42 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

Leave it for a month or so to recover, then drag* Stuart back and ask him to apologise for his whining. Then have him make a large donation to the British Legion by way of apology for his utterly insensitive, spoilt brat like comments.

 

*Let's face it, he won't be man enough to step up and admit he was wrong on his own.

Oh and then have him pick up all the dog sh*t left around the park. 

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rowes [91 posts] 1 week ago
6 likes

My local park was due to hold an event in a couple off weeks time. However it was "churned up with mud everywhere" during a Pretty Muddy charity event for Cancer Research and the same dog walker type people complained then. As such, the cross event was not wanted. Amazingly the organisers managed to find a replacement nearby.
The park looks fine now though after a couple of weeks growth and some rain.

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ChrisB200SX [551 posts] 1 week ago
7 likes

In other news: Dog walker complains that wet, muddy, field is wet and muddy.
Maybe walk your dog somewhere else if you don't like cleaning your shoes and your dog?

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Simon E [3122 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

Several hundred enthusiasts vs 1 NIMBY dog-walker? Ha ha, no contest! Can't this clown find somewhere else to walk his dog? Or perhaps save up and buy the heath so no-one else can use it.

We have had the same problem with a couple of awkward gits who don't like 'their' little path through a small wooded area (one among any number of options) being taped off for 1 day a year. Wankers.

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srchar [687 posts] 6 days ago
0 likes

I'm guessing that Stuart Allison is more Baldrick than Lord Flasheart.