Woman fined £75 for feeding the pigeons
NewsTuesday 16 July 2013
A woman in Bolton was fined £75 after feeding some of her leftover pasty to the pigeons.
The fine was handed to the woman by a member of the local council who was in plain-clothes. She was spotted by the individual who handed her a fixed penalty notice because she fed the bird.
According to the Daily Mail, the incident occurred right in front of an AA worker, called Gavin Moynihan. He told the paper: “‘I was really annoyed by what happened. I could not believe it. She was putting rubbish in the bin and then just gave a bit of her pasty to the birds.
“A man came over and told her what she was doing was against some Act and gave her a fine. I was really shocked.”
The reason she was handed the fine was later revealed by the council. They stated that while she correctly disposed of her wrapper, she was being fined for feeding the pigeons, which are classified as ‘vermin’ and should not be fed.
The council, however, has backed down over the fine after it received a complaint.
“It is not our intention to target individuals unnecessarily and issue fines where education is more appropriate,” a spokesperson said.
“Feeding pigeons in the town centre is discouraged as the birds are vermin and seen as a nuisance to many.”
He added: “We will be writing to the individual with the intention of cancelling the fixed penalty notice, but would like to remind the public dropping litter is an offence and we would advise people not to encourage pigeons by feeding them.”
The council said the fine was issued by a member of its plain-clothed education and enforcement team, whose other roles include tackling fly-tipping. It stressed that feeding pigeons would still be deemed a littering offence in future.
Local shop worker Mark Schofield, 51, supported the council’s position. He said: “If people are fined for dropping a cigarette end they should be fined for dropping any sort of litter.”
It’s not the first time a few crumbs have proved potentially costly. In 2008, Sarah Davies was issued with a £75 fine for dropping a piece of sausage roll while feeding it to her four-year-old daughter Chloe, but a judge in Hull threw the case out.
Picture: Ruthanne Reid