Rules to encourage dog owners to make sure they pick up after their pets if they are walking them through the borough's cemeteries have come into force.
A new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) means that owners of dogs who do not pick up after their pet or allow them off the leash in one of the borough's cemeteries can be issued with a £100 fixed penalty notice.
Cllr Ben Maney, Cabinet Member for Transport and Public Safety, said: "We know the vast majority of dog owners are entirely responsible but it is only right we ask, out of respect for our cemeteries and the mourners attending them, that all dogs are kept on a lead and that their owners pick-up after them. This PSPO gives our enforcement officers the powers they need to tackle anyone who allows their dog to run free in a cemetery or worse still, fails to clear up after them."
Cllr Andrew Jefferies, Cabinet member for Environment, said: "Our cemeteries are not only beautiful open spaces, they are a place for people to mourn, reflect and remember the lives of loved ones. We understand that most dog walkers are entirely respectful of that and we hope this order will help us to ensure that our cemeteries remain a peaceful sanctuary where people can remember those they have lost."
The PSPO came into force on Friday 3 February and requires owners to remove any dogs mess left by their pets and to make sure dogs are on a leash at all times in the borough's cemeteries.
It can be viewed online at www.thurrock.gov.uk/pspo