Fife bans lantern and balloon releases in all parks

Picture Ian RutherfordPicture Ian Rutherford
Picture Ian Rutherford
Releasing sky lanterns and balloons in Fife parks is set to be formally banned in the region's first revision of green space rules in a decade.

Councillors on the local authority's community and housing services sub-committee have signed off on a consultation process that will also create new rules around the use of drones in public parks.

A total of five new rules are being added for parks and open spaces, pending public consultation.

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These include a requirement for visitors to comply with the Air Navigation Order 2016 when operating drones - and a rule that gives pedestrians the right of way over cars and cyclists.

Park users will also be formally banned from littering or flytipping within open spaces, releasing sky lanterns and balloons, and leading, riding, training or exercising horses in a manner that falls short of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, which generally requires horse riders to give way to pedestrians.

The release of sky lanterns and balloons is already forbidden by the local authority because of concerns around littering and fire risk.

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However, the inclusion of the rule in park policy in particular ensures it can be enforced by Fife Council staff.

Councillors Darren Watt (Conservative, Cowdenbeath) and Alastair Cameron (Labour, Kirkcaldy Central) made additions to the proposed rules regarding when exemptions can be made and how to regulate the speed of cyclists within parks.

Both suggestions will be included in the consultation expected to run into the new year.

> Jon Brady is the Local Democracy Reporter for Fife & Angus

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