A town in west Suffolk has been named amongst the best in the country for dogs as it has made the final of a prestigious competition. 

Bury St Edmunds is one of three towns that has made it into the final of the DogFriendly Awards 2023 in the Most Dog Friendly Town/City category, alongside Eastbourne in East Sussex and Girvan in Scotland. 

The awards, which are run by Dog Friendly Magazine and are in their 11th year, recognise businesses that go the extra mile to accommodate four-legged friends and the winner of each category is chosen by public vote. 

Bury St Edmunds has its own dog friendly scheme which was launched five years ago after a collaboration with the town council, Camp Tails Doggy Daycare, Our Bury St Edmunds BID and By St Edmunds and Beyond, and which sees the #dogfriendlybse paw print logo sticker displayed in the windows of more than 100 businesses that welcome canines. 

Bury Mercury: Bury St Edmunds has been named in the final, alongside Eastbourne and GirvanBury St Edmunds has been named in the final, alongside Eastbourne and Girvan (Image: Our Bury St Edmunds BID/Phil Morley)

The town’s tourism brand Bury St Edmunds and Beyond, now part of Our Bury St Edmunds BID, has also been running a campaign throughout autumn to encourage people to book a dog friendly stay in the town.

Mark Cordell, chief executive of Our Bury St Edmunds BID, said: "Not only does Bury St Edmunds welcome dogs in many of our businesses, but many go the extra mile offering items on their menus, free snacks for dogs and more and many of our local accommodation businesses offer dog stays too.

"It means that residents and visitors know that they don’t have to leave their four-legged member of their family at home when they visit the town allowing them to visit and stay longer.”

Jon Kay, owner of Camp Tails Doggy Daycare, who also founded the Dog Friendly Bury St Edmunds Scheme with former Bury St Edmunds town councillor Clive Springett, said: “One of my main goals when we created the scheme was to make Bury St Edmunds recognised as one of the most dog friendly locations in the UK, but I didn’t think for a minute we would potentially be recognised by the national dog friendly awards.

"I’m super proud and excited to be a finalist and have this vision become a reality.”

The awards ceremony will take place at The Kennel Club HQ in London on November 29.