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Dog restriction signs in Gobions Wood

Blue, yellow and red signs inform dog owners


Image: HMWT sign at Gobions Wood.

Signs have been erected at various entry points to Gobions Wood informing dog owners how they should manage their pets when visiting the nature reserve. The initiative by the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust (HMWT) is due to “the delicate nature of the habitat or due to the presence of grazing animals”.

The new system of blue, yellow, and red signs is aimed at helping dog owners understand how they are expected to control their pets when on land managed by HMWT.

The signs have been placed at various entry points to the woods.

HMWT has a section on its website about Dogs on Nature Reserves where it states:
“We welcome responsible dog owners on most of our nature reserves. However some of our reserves are not suitable for dogs due to the delicate nature of the habitat or due to the presence of grazing animals. 
“To make things clear, we operate a colour coding system for our reserves. Please be aware that the status of our nature reserves may change from time to time so look out for signage on site.”


A blue site for dogs means:


Image: HMWT blue dog restriction sign

  • Dogs must be kept under control at all times.
  • Dogs must not be allowed into the water.
  • Dog walkers must be in control of no more than three dogs per person.
  • No professional dog walkers.
  • Sections of the reserve may be closed to dogs.
  • Please clean up after your dog.


A yellow site for dogs means:


Image: HMWT yellow dog restriction sign

  • Dogs must be kept on leads at all times to protect the delicate wildlife of the reserve.
  • Dogs must not be allowed into the water.
  • Dog walkers must be in control of no more than three dogs per person.
  • No professional dog walkers.
  • Sections of the reserve may be closed to dogs.
  • Please clean up after your dog.


A red site for dogs means:



Image: HMWT red dog restriction sign

  • No dogs are allowed on site. This is to protect the delicate wildlife of the reserve. Livestock may also be present on the site.

Signs have been attached to posts at a number of entry points to Gobions Wood including the Mymms Drive entrance in the north-east corner (Grid Ref: TL 25761 03785), and North Mymms footpath number 11 where it meets Gobions Wood in the south-west corner (Grid Ref: TL 24856 03356). Other signs warning dog owners have been placed throughout the reserve.

What is not clear is where the different zones meet. North Mymms News emailed HMWT asking whether there is a map of Gobions Wood with the blue, yellow and red zones marked. HMWT replied saying “Gobions Wood is one of our more complicated sites for dog signage and we are looking at ways of making this clearer”.

Image: Blue dog behaviour sign inside the Gobions Wood nature reserve Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
Blue dog behaviour sign inside the Gobions Wood nature reserve
Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
Image: Yellow dog behaviour sign at the Mymms Drive entrance to Gobions Wood  Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
Yellow dog behaviour sign at the Mymms Drive entrance to Gobions Wood
Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons

Image: Red dog behaviour sign close to the entrance to Gobions Wood Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
Red dog behaviour sign close to the entrance to Gobions Wood
Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons

Image: Red wildlife warning sign close to the entrance to Gobions Wood Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
Red wildlife warning sign close to the entrance to Gobions Wood
Image by North Mymms News released under Creative Commons
The HMWT webpage for Gobions Wood states that dogs visiting the reserve need to be kept “Under effective control”, with “No dogs in enclosures”, and that “In other areas dogs are permitted on leads.” Screen grab from the HMWT site below.

Image: Screen grab from the HMWT Gobions Wood site
Screen grab from the HMWT Gobions Wood site
A spokesperson for HMWT told this site that the new policy has been introduced for environmental reasons.
“The decision to implement the dog signage was taken to protect the delicate habitats on our nature reserves. Whilst we welcome responsible dog owners, we must try to ensure that visitors to our reserves who bring dogs with them do not harm the habitats or wildlife found there.”
Meanwhile the Gobions Wood noticeboard, which stands outside the pharmacy in Brookmans Park village, has been updated with the latest information.

Image The Gobions Wood noticeboard in Brookmans Park village centre Image courtesy of the HMWT
The Gobions Wood noticeboard in Brookmans Park village centre
Image courtesy of the HMWT

Gobions and Moffats Open Spaces


Photograph of NMPC has put prominent signage around both public open spaces Image by North Mymms News, released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
NMPC has put prominent signage about clearing up dog mess at both public open spaces
Image by North Mymms News, released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

The rules for the control of dogs on adjacent land managed by North Mymms Parish Council (NMPC) are contained in the bye laws of 1987 and read:
“A person shall not cause or suffer any dog belonging to him or in his charge to enter or remain on the ground unless such dog be and continue to be under proper control and be effectively restrained from causing annoyance to any person, and from worrying or disturbing any animal.”
Last year NMPC put up signs reminding dog owners that there is no such thing as the Dog Poo fairy.




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