In April, 2019, I was walking with friends through Tyneham Village, in Dorset, with my dog (Rosie) on a lead. We followed the footpath from the village to go up the hill and back onto the top, and to head back to the car park.
A group of cows became very interested in us. My dog was well behaved and on the lead – but the cows came close and I became frightened.
Three of our group were further down the path, but the cows surrounded two of us. Rosie (my dog) and I were trapped between the herd of about forty cows and a ten foot high fence. I was terrified. My friend further down the hill was screaming at me to let Rosie off the lead, but I was scared she would be trampled and killed, so I hid her behind my legs.
My friend who was trapped with me was very brave. She shouted “Get back!” and began clapping her hands.
In the end, I let Rosie off the lead and, luckily, she ran off to join my other friend down the hill. The cows were distracted enough for us to be able to get past and we all ran back down the hill to the gate and back into Tyneham Village.
We weren’t hurt, but I have never been so frightened in all my life – and have never been able to walk through cows since. It has spoiled my love of walking with my dog in the countryside.
I reported the incident to the Lulworth Rangers, but they were not interested.
It’s a popular area. Tyneham Village is a derelict village from World War II and is an interesting place to visit, so very popular with walkers and also very popular with families and children. I know other people had problems that day too. Cows should be fenced off from walkers.
I’m terrified to go anywhere where there may be cows now, which drastically limits my choice of walks. And I am not alone with that.