CLACKMANNAN'S Dog Poo Detectives have been recognised for inspiring a dramatic drop in the number of droppings left in the town.

The primary school set up their We Count Committee after winning a £2,000 funding package from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust's Dog Poo Challenge.

Clackmannan residents highlighted the blight of droppings as their most disliked aspect of the town in the 2015-20 Community Action Plan.

To tackle the issue, community development officer Lesley Shaw has been working with wardens as well as Debra Laird, headteacher of Clackmannan PS, and the We Count Group.

The We Count Group is a pupil-council committee which has representatives from nursery all the way up to P7.

Its youngest member is five-year-old Rameez Ashraf, from the nursery class, who drew the dog which is the centre piece of the banners.

The group turned Dog Poo Detectives and when on walks around the school and town centre, with Lesley, Mrs Laird and parent helpers, they sprayed any poo found with bright yellow semi-permanent paint to visibly warn people and highlight the extent of the problem.

Their first outing recorded a horrifying 50 dog poos, but the most recent outing a couple of weeks ago saw the number reduced to 12.

Lesley said: "It was encouraging to see the number had decreased but we are aiming to get them even lower.

"The programme sets out to the raise awareness of the matter and to encourage those who are guilty of not picking up after their dogs, to act as responsible dog owners and take pride in our community."

Bob Young, Scottish trustee of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, presented citizenship certificates and congratulated them on a "magnificent job" in tackling the issue.

He also told how he has been personally-impacted by dog mess, highlighting the long-lasting impact it can have on families.

He said: "I have a relative who lost the sight of one eye after being infected by dog droppings when he was playing football in a local park, so this issue does pose a real health risk."

The We Count Group have also had the opportunity to work with a graphic designer to create a logo, posters and banners which will be used to promote the message around the town as part of the legacy of the programme and finish up with a Dog Show as part of the gala day celebrations on Saturday, July 15, at Alexander Park.

Ms Laird added: "It is so important that our children are meaningfully involved in the work of our community. The Dog Poo Detectives initiative has provided a superb opportunity for the children to really make a difference and work together to improve the environment."