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Not Allowed to Take Photo's of Daughter in Park

Mandy Smith and Steve Brook were told by a “more than my jobs worth” park warden that they could not take photographs of their child in the park!

They had taken their 11 month old daughter Rebecca along to the Alexandra Park in Oldham to feed the ducks and have her very first go on the swings.

While dad Steve was pushing Rebecca on the swing the park warden came up to them and told them to stop taking photos as they were not allowed.

Steve Brook said "while at the park I put Rebecca in a swing which she had never been in before. She was giggling and really loving it so my partner Mandy decided to capture the moment on film.

"A man in a high-visibility jacket came over and told us we couldn’t take pictures.

"I asked him why and he said it was illegal to take pictures of children in the park. I explained it was my own daughter but he still said it wasn’t allowed. 

"As we already had a couple of pictures I didn’t remonstrate too much and we went home for an early tea.
"It was only later when we started to think about it that I started to get mad. I realised the attendant was probably only acting on orders from his superiors but I thought it was political correctness gone mad.

"It should have been very obvious this was our own daughter so I didn’t see the harm. There were other clear breaches of park rules taking place such as dogs’ not on leads but he didn’t seem to want to do anything about that.

"I think it is a sad state of affairs when you can’t take a picture of your own little girl in a public park. My mother used to push me in a pram in that very park, and my grandmother used to push her."

Taking Photographs in Parks is not illegal!

A spokesperson from Oldham Council said that the warden had misinterpreted the rules designed to help protect children and he has been made ‘aware of his actions”. 

The Council staff had been instructed to be observant and aware of activities in the park regarding all users.

Taking photographs of children in public places is by no means illegal but in March this year Vale of Glamorgan council in South Wales attempted to make it so!  They proposed that no photographs, filming or other imaging should take place of children in public places without written permission.

The proposal was thrown out on the grounds of the impossibility to enforce the rule as well as stating that parents should not have to gain permission to take photographs of their own children.

MP for Olham East and Saddleworth, Phil Woolas said: "Based on these reports I am thinking of introducing a Bill to Parliament called The Common Sense Act 2007.

He went on to say "We are in danger of becoming so adverse to risk we will lose sight of common sense."

I’m sure many of us with children will be outraged at this situation in the overzealous actions of a person who obviously overstepped the mark on park activities!!