- County Durham - UK: Riding instructors saddle up for safety training
Riding school owners and instructors
from across County Durham saddled up for a free training day to get their health and safety knowledge up to date.
Representatives from 16 riding schools
across County Durham attended the special event on 5 October at South Causey Equestrian Centre in Stanley which was organised
by Durham County Council in partnership with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The aim of the event was to provide
business owners and instructors with practical, common sense guidance on health and safety at riding schools.
This covered areas such as complying
accident reporting, manual handling, personal protective equipment and the general safety and welfare of staff and visitors.
There was also a session on how to
prevent the health problems dust can cause and an equine fire safety expert offered advice on how to protect against arson
and general fire prevention.
Ian Bousfield, Senior Environmental
Health Officer, who helped organise the event, said: "We are delighted with the take up and interest shown in the event by
local businesses. It has been both informative and enjoyable for everyone concerned and we hope to run similar events in the
Paul Spurrier, Partnership Manager
for HSE in Yorkshire and the North East, said: "It is great to see councils taking the initiative and working with us to provide
free events for small businesses and individuals so they can benefit from up to date sensible health and safety advice. We
hope that the riding schools owners and instructors got a lot out of the day and that more free events like this can be provided
in the future."
INDUSTRY 28/09/09 –
UK: Horse riders take action as new campaign website and e-petition to the Prime
Minister go live
riders across the UK are joining together to urge the Government to think again about imposing an “unfair tax in all
but name” on every horse owner in the UK.
The “Rethink the Horse Tax” campaign, launched today by a coalition
of organisations representing a broad cross section of the UK horse industry, is calling on riders, breeders and veterinarians
to make their voices heard by visiting a new campaign website – www.RethinktheHorseTax.org – and take action by writing to their constituency MPs and by signing an online petition to the Prime Minister.
Campaigners are further concerned that plans to create a new agency will place
mounting costs on horse owners at a time when Government support is needed to help boost rural economies and encourage wider
participation in outdoor sport.
Under the plans, horse owners
would be charged on the same basis as keepers of livestock farm animals such as sheep and pigs – despite the fact that
a significant proportion of horses are kept for leisure and sporting, rather than commercial activities, paid for from of
income that is already taxed.
Veterinary surgeons have also made it clear that plans to create a new agency
responsible for animal health could needlessly complicate the process of managing outbreaks of animal disease animal health,
putting at risk the clear single line of command essential in the event of a major disease outbreak. A lack of clarity over
the roles of the four Chief Veterinary Officers in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland in the proposals has also been highlighted
as a major concern by the campaign.
And campaigners have further highlighted the fact that the new body would spend
much of its time collecting charges from people who own just one horse (65% of horse owners), meaning that the cost of physically
collecting the charge will almost outweigh the charge itself – an estimated £2.3m would be needed to collect just £4.5m
from horse owners under the plans.
With costs of £14.3m to set up and millions more to maintain the new body in
the coming years, campaigners have made it clear that the proposals do not represent value for money for either the equine
community or the taxpayer.
Andrew Finding, Chief Executive of the British Equestrian Federation said:
“Through this campaign the horse community has an opportunity to make its voice heard and send a strong message to the
Government on cost sharing. The proposals just don’t make a convincing case on how hitting horse owners with new costs
and extra bureaucracy will benefit either the equine community or taxpayers in general.”
Mark Weston, Director of Access Safety and Welfare at The British Horse Society,
said: “We need to make sure that politicians in Westminster are made fully aware of the potential damage that these
proposals could do to the horse sector, and the lack of any perceived benefit that they would bring to the millions of Britons
who enjoy horse riding each year.”
More about the Rethink the Horse Tax
Rethink the Horse Tax is a not-for-profit campaign led by a coalition of organisations
representing all parts of the UK horse industry, encompassing horseracing, leisure riding, competitive sport, professional
breeding and veterinarians. Organisations behind the campaign include:
· The British Horseracing Authority
· The British Equestrian Federation
· The Thoroughbred Breeders' Association
· The British Horse Society (BHS)
· The British Equestrian Trade
· The British Equine Veterinary
· The National Trainers Federation
· The Racecourse Owners Association
Further information on the Government’s
· Defra’s proposals are
available to view here: http://www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/consult/new-independent-body-ah/index.htm
· Under the proposals, horse owners
would be charged an annual fee of £10.50 per animal (as set out in Defra’s Impact Assessment).
· The new Bill has yet to be debated
in the Houses of Parliament.
This third edition reflects the significant changes
in animal welfare legislation as well as improved scientific knowledge of welfare issues.
Whilst previous editions were used extensively
in supporting welfare investigations and legal proceedings, the new edition is designed to assist anyone responsible for the
welfare of horses, ponies and donkeys in meeting their obligations under the new welfare legislation in England, Wales and Scotland.
NEWC Chairman and Head of Welfare at Redwings,
Nicolas de Brauwere MRCVS, says: “The Compendium is designed to underpin the Codes of Practice for the Welfare of Equines
by providing a greater level of detail and information to enable people to understand how they can best meet the needs of
the equines under their care.”
The Compendium was funded, written and produced
by the industry, with the full support of Defra and HRH The Princess Royal. It
has been made available to the public for no more than the cost of postage. Uptake so far has been very strong, in particular
by equine educational institutions such as the vet schools. The industry is keen
to also see the Compendium in the hands of horse owners and others responsible for the day to day care of equines
President of BEVA, Chris House said, “The
Compendium is an excellent tool as a reference to assist in raising equine welfare standards nationwide.”
For your free copy of the Compendium, download here or contact NEWC on: 01926 866655 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
More about NEWC… The National Equine Welfare Council was set up in 1977 with the aim of uniting the equine welfare industry and raising
welfare standards nationwide. It now has a membership base of over 60 welfare organisations, including equine welfare charities
large and small throughout the United Kingdom
as well as a multitude of organisations from the equestrian and veterinary sectors of the horse industry. Its work includes
support for small welfare organisations, making representations to Government and advising individuals. It also produces a
Code of Practice for those organisations involved in the keeping of horses, ponies, asses, mules & donkeys and supports
members by providing up to date information, running annual seminars and representing them to Government and other bodies.
Member organisations include involved in the keeping of equines can be relied upon to achieve excellent standards of care
for their animals. Many operate loan schemes whereby horses and ponies go out on loan to inspected homes whilst remaining
the property of the charity and being protected for the rest of their lives. Visit www.newc.co.uk for more information.
‘Responsible Re-homing’ and ‘Cutting Cost without Compromising on Welfare’ are two leaflets that have been produced by NEWC in response to the high number of requests for help that our members
are receiving from horse owners struggling financially across the UK. The leaflets have been produced as a result of
collaboration between members of the National Equine Welfare Council.
OTHER NEWS 27/08/09 - Buckinghamshire - UK: Riders benefit from new safety initiatives
Riders in Buckinghamshire are set to benefit from two new
At the County Show, Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service, supported by
local organisations and a charity gave away over 500 Rural Safety Packs providing hints and tips on how to make agricultural,
equine and farm-related property and buildings safe and secure.
Each pack includes leaflets and information from Thames Valley Horsewatch,
Neighbourhood Watch, the RSPCA, Bucks Economic & Learning Partnership (BELP) and Buckinghamshire Rural Affairs Group (BRAG),
as well as fire safety advice, including a 12 point checklist for farms and equestrian premises:
-- is your house/farm sign displayed at the entrance?
· Fire hydrant
- which is your nearest Fire hydrant?
· Water supplies
-- location of available additional water supplies for example tanks, ponds, rivers?
plan -- is a written animal evacuation plan available at all times?
animals -- stables/stalls/fields identifiable if you are not there?
risks -- what materials do you have on site and a suitably stored away from fire risks?
-- what chemicals are stored, how many and where? Are they marked with the relevant
-- supplies/tanks/pipes clearly marked?
· Staff –
Are your staff aware of emergency procedures and contact numbers?
-- are your electrics, workshops and yard is maintained and kept tidy?
-- are you hosting the general public on your property? How many are likely to
be present?Agricultural buildings -- how many buildings do you have on your site? What size are they and what is their current use (animal, crops, hay, chemicals, machinery)?
|click to enlarge
Community safety partnership manager Jo Oliver from Buckinghamshire Fire &
Rescue Service said: “We and our partner organisations don’t tend to think of the members of our farming, equine
or agricultural communities as being vulnerable, but they are definitely a group that we find hard to reach and don’t
often come into contact with other than at barn, farm or field fires.
“There is lots of information out there, but nothing is in one easy location
for them to find. This pack is the first part of a plan to help people from our rural communities gain access to information
that can help them and is specific to their needs, in a format that is easy for them to use.”
In the second initiative, Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service has begun
a joint initiative with local horse welfare charity, The Horse Trust, and Thames Valley Horsewatch, to help ensure that firefighters
are better prepared if called to help a large animal in difficulty.
Firefighters are sometimes called out by concerned owners and members of the
public to help rescue animals that have got into difficult situations, and national guidelines are currently being set up
to ensure best practice procedures are used nationally.
The joint initiative was developed to ensure that firefighters have the skills,
training and equipment they need to maximise their own safety and minimise the risk of further injury to the animals they
are called to help.
Area Manager Denis O’Driscoll, who heads up Buckinghamshire Fire &
Rescue Service’s Operational Response Department, said: "Although we do not receive a large number of these types of
calls, we know that there will be occasions where we will need to undertake this kind of activity. As a result, we need to
ensure that we are adequately prepared and equipped to deal with these incidents and we are grateful to The Horse Trust for
the support and assistance that they are providing. This is a good example of an increasing number of joint initiatives and
collaborations that Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service is engaged in that will provide real benefits to our local communities."
Among the large animals Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service is asked
to assist are horses, usually those who have got themselves stuck in ditches, stables or cattle grids, but also to horses
trapped in overturned trailers on roads or motorway.
It is also possible that firefighters could be called to a fire at an equestrian
yard or stables. When trapped in unusual conditions, any animal is likely to become frightened, which can make a situation
more dangerous both for the animal and firefighters.
The Horse Trust has provided horse-handling training to members of operational
staff from Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service. During evening sessions at The Horse Trust’s stables in Speen,
firefighters from Great Missenden and Winslow were taught about animal behaviour and awareness, as well as how to approach
and catch horses safely.
Paul Jepson, Chief Executive of The Horse Trust, said: “With over 100
horses, ponies and donkeys here at the sanctuary, we are very aware of the real risk of fire and regularly have drills to
remind our staff of the process of evacuating the stables at speed with safety foremost in the minds of our staff and horses. Over the years, a number of our geriatric horses have got themselves stuck under fences
and become distressed as they have been unable to stand up, so we understand the importance of horse handling knowledge when
dealing with these situations.”
The Horse Trust has also given Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service a
grant of £11,636 to enable them to buy the specialist equipment needed for the rescues.
The specialist animal rescue teams will be formally launched later in the year.
Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue: www.bucksfire.gov.uk
The Horse Trust (www.horsetrust.org.uk) is the oldest horse charity in the world, originally established back in 1886 to help the working horses in London. Its
expanding welfare department has a number of initiatives underway which will provide tangible welfare benefits to horses in
our area and their owners, as well as emergency service and partner organisation personnel. These include provision of specialist
horse training which will prepare and equip emergency responders to deal safely with horse encounters and increase safety
for all present at the scene.
Thames Valley Horsewatch (www.thamesvalleyhorsewatch.org.uk) is a Thames Valley Police initiative to combat equine crime and aims to raise awareness of equine crime and improve communication
and security among horse owners and riders.
PEOPLE 24/07/09 – UK:
Chairman of British Riding Clubs dies
It was with much sadness that the Trustees
of the BHS and the members of the British Riding Clubs National Executive Committee learnt that Laurie Punnett died on Thursday
BHS Chairman Patrick Print said "Whether
it was as a Trustee of the BHS, Chairman of the BRC NEC or Chairman of Gower Riding Club, Laurie's commitment was total.
“In his element as a cross-country
controller, witty and informed in the commentary box and totally dedicated as 'chef d'equipe’ for his wife Sarah, Laurie
put his heart into the Riding Club movement, earning the respect and affection of all those who reaped the benefit. I will
not be the only one mourning the loss of a very good friend today."
Source: British Horse Society
FIRE 20/07/09 – UK:
Arson attack on donkeys »
A donkey escaped being burned to death in a suspected arson attack at stables
LEGAL 20/07/09 – UK: Horse owners urged to check their equestrian insurance policies »
A specialist equine barrister is urging horse owners to scrutinise their insurance
closely after learning that many policies do not cover third-party liability when a horse is being cared for on a livery yard,
by a visiting practitioner or by a horse-sitter.
Source: Horse & Hound
ACCIDENT 19/07/09 – Ireland: Woman out riding in critical condition after being hit by a truck »
A woman is in a critical condition in hospital after she was hit by a truck.
The accident happened on 19 July (10 a.m) as she was out horse riding on the R666 road to Fermoy, Co Cork.
21/07/09 Update »
The Irish Independent reports that the 52 year
old woman remains in a critical condition, having suffered serious head and chest injuries. The horse was killed instantly
in the accident.
Source: Irish Independent
– UK: Criminal Records Bureau reduces fees
The Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) has announced that it will reduce the fee
for Standard Disclosures from October with total savings to customers of £1 million.
Following a pricing review, the government agency has agreed to reduce the
fee charged for a Standard Disclosure from £31 to £26.
Home Office Minister David Hanson MP said:
“The CRB plays a vital role helping to protect the most vulnerable in
our society by giving employers the extra tools they need to make informed recruitment decisions. The cost of a CRB check
now represents even greater value for money given the protection and assurance that such checks provide.”
The recently published Business Plan for 2009/10 shows that during the past
12 months the CRB has
prevented a further 18,000 unsuitable people from gaining access to children
and vulnerable adults as a direct result of a CRB check, bringing the total to around 98,000 in the past five years.
The following fee levels will apply from October 1 throughout the remainder
- Standard CRB check £26 (reduced
- Enhanced CRB check £36
- POVAFirst check £6
Further information about the CRB
The CRB was established under Part V of the Police Act 1997 and commenced operation
It provides access to criminal record information through its Disclosure service.
It enables organisations in the public, private and voluntary sectors to make safer recruitment decisions by identifying candidates
who may be unsuitable for certain work, especially that involving children or vulnerable adults.
Source: Home Office
Go to the Criminal Records Bureau website »
- UK: Vets and fire crews work to make horse rescues safer »
Vets and fire crews in the south-east
held a "local rescue meeting" on Tuesday (7 July) as part of a continuing drive to make horse rescues safer and more efficient.
The initiative builds on the "emergency services protocol" launched in May
2007 by BEVA and the British Horse Society (BHS), after H&H reported a worrying variation in the way police and firemen
handle 999 calls involving equines.
The protocol is soon to be relaunched and Horse & Hound would like to hear
if your horse has been involved in an emergency where fire crew and/or police attended. Please email email@example.com
FIRE 11/07/09 - Eastern Pennsylvania –
USA: 4 horses injured in barn fire »
Four horses have been injured, one critically, as three barns burned at Pink
Star Equestrian Center, Eastern Pennsylvania. Most of the farm's 30 horses were in pastures and stayed away from the flames.
Fire broke out around 11 p.m. Thursday 9 July at the farm near Limekiln in
Oley Township, about 45 miles northwest of Philadelphia. It took more than 120 firefighters from 30 fire companies in Berks,
Chester and Montgomery counties to get the fire under control.
Officials are investigating the cause of the blaze, which leveled two barns,
left a third partly standing and is estimated to have caused damage in the region of $700,000 to $1 million.
Source: PA/Reading Eagle
13/07/09 – Update »
It’s reported that the four horses injured in the fire are expected to
recover. However, two of the horses suffered severe burns to their backs and
damage to their lungs. One of the two also suffered burns to its head and side. The
owner said that neither horse will ever will be ridden again and one may lose its vision.
ACCIDENT 10/07/09 - North Carolina - USA: Woman dies on trail ride »
A Pennsylvania woman on a trail ride died on Thursday evening (9 July) when
the horse she was riding in Madison County reared and fell on her.
Source: News Record & Sentinel
ACCIDENT 10/07/09 - Worcestershire - UK: Man falls from horse on old railway »
A man in his 60’s, found unconscious, was airlifted to hospital after
falling from his horse on a disused railway track in Prescott, Cleobury Mortimer. It’s
believed that the horse may have rolled on him. He was treated at the scene for a minor head and hand injury and taken to
Worcestershire Royal Hospital for further assessment and treatment.
Source: Berrows Worcester Journal
UK: ABRS Annual General Meeting & Conference
The Association of British Riding Schools (ABRS) is holding its Annual General
Meeting and Conference on Monday 19 October at Shrigley Hall, Pott Shrigley, Manchester, Cheshire SK10.
Further information about the event and booking can be found at: www.abrs-info.org/
HSE Dorset – UK:
Free health and safety training workshop for equestrian businesses
Local Councils in Dorset are working in partnership with the Health & Safety
Executive (HSE) and Kingston Maurward College to bring those in the equestrian industry a free health and safety training
The workshop will take place at Kingston Maurward College, Dorchester (DT2 8PX)
from 10.30 – 3.45 on Thursday 12 November 2009.
Topics during the day will include how to comply with legislation and the supporting
role of the HSE and Local Authorities. At a practical level there will be a focus on manual handling, ATV (quad bike)
and machinery safety, human and equine personal protective equipment, supported by ridden demonstrations from the equestrian
department at the College.
Those attending will have the opportunity to ask questions in a friendly and relaxed
To register to attend this event e-mail Glenda Treneary at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01752 276300 and ask for Glenda Treneary or Paul Webber. Closing date
for registration will be on 1 November 2009.
|Click on the picture to find out more details
The third edition of the Equine Industry
Welfare Guidelines Compendium has just been launched. I’ve not yet met a horse owner who knew of the existence
of the previous editions, first launched in 2002. They’re an absolute gem and I suggest everyone involved with the care
of horses download a copy, and hang a hard copy in every yard. The guidelines represent good practice and can act
as a basis for any other country wishing to set up guidelines of its own. They’re there to ensure the health,
safety and welfare of our horses, ponies and donkeys. We owe it to them to read and act on them.
Ü "In sicknes and
The ‘In sickness and in health’ fundraising campaign is designed
to support the BHS’s work of preventing the suffering of thousands of horses and ponies, which it does by providing
expert advice across a broad range of equine topics.
Read more »
the Strangles hold
In February 2007, the Animal Health Trust (AHT) and British Horse Society (BHS)
launched a nationwide Strangles Campaign, which has two aims. The first is to raise awareness of this dreadful equine plague,
and the second is to gain support for the research programme.
For this, the target is to raise £250,000 to fund research into the next stages
of the development of improved means of diagnosis and prevention – ultimately to eradicate this terrible disease.
The campaign was launched by the President of the AHT, HRH The Princess Royal,
at the Royal Society of Medicine in London. It continues to make great progress, with the total raised so far standing at
For more information about Strangles and the campaign visit www.strangles.org
Ü Riding hats and helmets are just different terms used to describe the same thing -