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Riding Safely

News for November & December 2005



Looking Forward

20 years ago a Horse & Hound column led with "Yes, we do still need that big, strong voice", spoke of fragmentation and the need to present a united front to the public and media.


10 years ago another Horse & Hound column led with "Never before have riding schools had it so bad".


Now we have that big strong voice, the seeds have been sown to end fragmentation and for the first time we have a strategy that should ensure a sustainable future for the horse industry.


But we mustn't forget, as the strategy points out, "Every action needs a person or, more likely, people to do it. There is not a rider or driver or worker in equestrianism who is absolved from all responsibility.  If you do your bit the Strategy will be a success.  If you prefer to leave it all to someone else you lose your right to complain when nothing happens".


Read "Yes, we do still need that big, strong voice" and "Never before have riding schools had it so bad" >>>


Safety doesn't "just" happen

Olympia for many is the pinnacle of all the shows that occur throughout the year.  Spectators, competitors and staff all went there in the knowledge that it would be enjoyable and well-organised -- and it was.  Part of that good organisation was about ensuring the safety of everyone.  Year on year the safety aspect for those organising Olympia must become easier, having built up knowledge from previous years and learning from things that went well and acting on those that didn't.


But we need to hear the words "enjoyable and well-organised" uttered by everyone taking part in any aspect of equestrianism - whether that is using a riding school, a livery yard, attending a local show or whatever....

Of course, "safety" is just one small part of eliciting a positive experience.  Getting it right really isn't difficult -- but getting it wrong at best might lead to the words "unenjoyable and disorganised" and the accompanying bad publicity, but at worst might lead to the loss of a life or a lifetime of incapacity and the premature closure of a business.


We now have the strategy for the industry to go forward - let's make sure that we go forward with safety in a positive way that is beneficial to everyone.



Your Right of Reply.....

You can comment about any of the items in this edition of the News digest in the Forum.


Safety Tip
We may not have escaped the cold weather yet so make sure that you identify the location of all the stop cocks/valves inside your premises as well as the main incoming valve - just in case you get that burst pipe.... But also ensure that you advise your staff (or anyone else who needs to know) of their location.  In the event that the worst happens and water freezes on the yard make sure you have a supply of salt.


A landmark achievement for the Horse Industry as its first ever Strategy is launched 

The first ever strategy for the horse industry in England and Wales was launched on the 6th December 2005 by the British Horse Industry Confederation (BHIC), in partnership with Defra, DCMS and the Welsh Assembly Government.


The Strategy sets out a vision of where the industry aspires to be within ten years, how the different parts of the industry fit into this picture, and how the Government can help it in following this path.


Since publishing ground-breaking research by the Henley Centre in March 2004, Defra and the horse industry have been working together to develop a joint Strategy to foster a robust and sustainable horse industry, increase its economic value, enhance the welfare of the horse, and develop the industry's contribution to the cultural, social, educational, health and sporting life of the nation. The draft was published in February 2005 and following a successful public consultation period, the final strategy has been produced.


Some of the suggestions raised in Riding Safely's formal response to the consultative draft have been incorporated into the final strategy.


At the launch event at Lee Valley Riding Centre in Leyton, London, Jim Knight, Defra's Minister for the Horse Industry said:

"This day marks a significant milestone in the strengthening partnership between Government and the horse industry. The Strategy is testimony to the major contribution which the horse industry makes, both to our economy in general and to the lives of so many people in cities and rural areas across England and Wales.

"From rural regeneration and environmental protection, to health and education, the horse industry has a key role to play in delivering our national priorities. I share with the BHIC a strong conviction that the industry has the potential to develop further and contribute more - and this Strategy is aimed at unlocking that potential.

"While today's launch is an achievement in itself, the success of the Strategy will lie in harnessing the enthusiasm and the continued positive efforts of everyone interested in horses, or engaged in horse-related business. Government for its part will continue to work with the industry to achieve common objectives, which include improving access to safe off-road routes, increasing and widening participation in equestrianism, raising standards of business performance and enhancing the health and welfare of horses, ponies and donkeys.

"I urge everyone concerned with horses and equestrianism to read this Strategy and pledge their support, so that we can move forward in unison to deliver the vision it sets out of a strong, vibrant and sustainable future."


The Chairman of the British Horse Industry Confederation, Graham Cory, said:

"We can rejoice that months of consultation and collaboration have resulted in a comprehensive and exciting Strategy, which encompasses the many varied parts of the horse industry.

"However, we now have to face the challenging task of delivering the 50 Action Points which are crucial to the Strategy's implementation. Every action needs a person or, more likely, people to take it forwards. There is not a rider or driver or worker in equestrianism who is absolved from all responsibility. If we all do our bit the Strategy will be a success."


The strategy proposes specific actions to help achieve the following initial broad objectives for accomplishing this aim:


1. to bring the Horse Industry together and develop its national, regional and local impact;

2. to increase participation in equestrianism and the social contribution of the Horse Industry;

3. to boost the economic performance of equine businesses;

4. to raise equestrian skills, training and standards;

5. to increase access to off-road riding and carriage driving;

6. to consider the environmental impact of the horse;

7. to encourage sporting excellence; and

8. to improve the quality and breeding of horses and ponies.


The Strategy will be supplemented by an Action Plan, due to be published in early 2006, which will set out who is responsible for taking things forward, the desired final outcome, the current position and the next steps. This will serve as the basis for monitoring progress in the future. It is intended that a progress report will be produced after one year and at suitable points thereafter.


      Electronic copies of the strategy are available from http://www.defra.gov.uk/rural/horses/topics/strategy.htm

      Hard copies are available by calling Defra publications on 08459 556000, quoting PB 11323  


Extract from Horse & Hound.......


BHIC players get ready for action

THE British Horse Industry Confederation (BHIC) has launched its strategy for the horse industry in England and Wales and plans to hold each of its members accountable for moving the industry forward.


"Drafting this document was one thing, but somebody has to do something," said Graham Cory, BHIC chairman and British Horse Society (BHS) chief executive.  If everybody waits for someone else, it will be a total waste of time, money and a squandering of opportunity."


BHIC incorporates every facet of the horse industry, including the Association of British Riding Schools (ABRS), the BHS, the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) and the British Horseracing Board (BHB).  Its strategy follows two years' consultation between members, DEFRA, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and the Welsh Assembly government.


At the launch, Jim Knight, minister for rural affairs and the horse, said: "This day marks a milestone in the strengthening partnership between the government and horse industry.  It is testimony to the major contribution the horse industry makes, both to our economy and to the lives of so many people."


BEF chief executive Andrew Finding said the strategy fitted with the federation's own strategic direction, adding:  "We hope that they will both go a long way towards helping the entire industry work together, for the greater good of all."   Cory said:  "lt's amazing this is happening. In this fractious industry, that all those people have got together over the past two years is quite something."


ABRS chairman Julian Marczak attributed ultimate success to an ability to "dismiss our differences, unite and support each other", while British Equine Trade Association chief executive Claire Williams stressed the enthusiasm that drove the strategy "now needs to be conveyed".

Extract source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 8 December 2005 

Industry unites to tackle insurance

The scenario of horse owners being held strictly liable for any accident involving their animal is being challenged, as ABIGAIL BUTCHER reported in Horse and Hound on 8 December 2005…….


THE Country Land and Business Association (CLA) and British Horse Society are uniting to call a halt to rising equestrian insurance premiums.


The two organisations met last Friday to discuss a way forward on their separate campaigns, following moves by the CLA to push forward amendments to the Animals Act relating to owners' strict liability.


"This was the first real and meaningful discussion I have had with the CLA in my time here," said BHS chief executive Graham Cory. "We've decided we must cooperate and pool our resources to achieve change."


The Law Lords' interpretation of the Animals Act 1971 in the Mirvahedy case - which resulted in considerable compensation — set a precedent that, added to the UK's increasing compensation culture, and has set insurance premiums spiralling.


In March 2003, horse owners Andrew and Susan Henley were held strictly liable for injuries to motorist. Hossein Mirvahedy in an accident in Devon in 1996, after their horses escaped from a field.


Last year, the CLA began a concerted push to remove strict liability from owners or keepers of horses involved in an accident where there has been no negligence.


"We're looking to suggest that people who own horses aren't strictly liable under the Animals Act unless they've been negligent," said CLA legal head Dr Karen Jones, who last week met with rural affairs minister Jim Knight to discuss ways in which the Act could be clarified and amended.


Dr Jones continued: "Going through at the moment is the Compensation Bill, which talks about clarifying when people are liable for accidents. We want it to say that owners of a normal animal behaving normally should not be liable — accidents can happen, as any horse owner knows.


"The government is very receptive. It recognises there is a problem that needs to be sorted."


Last week, Jim Knight told H&H he welcomed the CLA's campaign, but added: "I would not wish to absolve all horse, or other owners, from the responsibility of taking suitable precautions to protect innocent members of the public from the possibility of injury. Subject to that proviso, I am committed to exploring within government what action might be taken to resolve this situation."


How to tackle insurance hikes is discussed in the new British Horse Industry Confederation Federation strategy.  An industry-led working group, chaired by the BHS - together with DEFRA, the Association of British Riding Schools and the Association of British Insurers - has also, for the past two years, discussed ways the horse and insurance industries can work together to reduce risks and rising premiums. The BHS has now invited the CLA to join that group, both parties recognising they must use the weight of the whole industry to effect change.


Barry Fehler, director of South Essex Insurance Brokers, part of the working group, welcomed the move.


Battling insurance in Wales


INGRID Evans runs Llandwana Stables, a small trekking and livery business in Pembrokeshire.


Over the past two years, her insurance premium has risen by 200% - from 2,000 to 6,000 after an incident that was out of her control.


While trekking with a mother and her two daughters, two loose dogs [owned by tourists] ran at the horses and, in a natural show of fear, the horses spooked.


Three of the four riders, including Evans, fell.


"We were just walking up the bridleway in complete control, it was a real shock," recalled Evans.


Two years after the incident, Evans received a claim from the mother, including medical evidence of injury. Evans's insurance company settled out of court, but then her insurance premiums began to rise.


Evans contacted her solicitors to determine whether she could hold the owners of the dogs liable and was told her insurance company could settle the matter as it saw fit.  And settling out of court, a cheaper option than fighting a claim, is often taken.


Evans received two further claims from the daughters, one of whom did not fall off her horse. Evans's insurance company has settled one claim out of court, but is waiting for the results of the second. But as the second is processed, no other insurers will take her on and her premiums are now prohibitively high.


"I feel this situation is disgraceful, but what can I do?" asked Evans. "I have to either keep paying an extra 4,000 a year for something that wasn't my fault or the alternative is to close the stables."


"There are two ways forward - one is to overrule the precedent set by the Mirvahedy case, the other is to clarify the Animals Act," he said. "The insurance industry has been looking for a suitable substantial case with which to overrule the Mirvahedy case."


According to Fehler, insurance rates have stabilised in the past year, and there is no sign of a rise in the immediate future. "If there's clarification [to the Animals Act] it does make it easier to deal with difficult cases that would see a possible reduction in premiums," he said.


Simon Mackaness, director of THB Equestrian Group, also welcomed clarification, saying: "Anything that helps reduce the legal liability of the assured or the horse owner has to be of benefit." But he added: "As far as lowering premiums, it's hard to comment without knowing exactly what will be changed and the ramifications.

"We have to look at it from the different angles - legislation is interpreted in different ways, for example, the Animals Act has been interpreted in very different ways from when it was originally drafted."


Cory says the next step forward is "more talks" with the CLA, to ensure the case is "as robust and well argued, and backed up with as much evidence as possible".


Richard Jarman, CLA head of communications, added: "This is a really positive step forward.  It wasn't that we didn't want to work with the BHS, we just had members chomping at our heels to get things done."

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 8 December 2005


Safety mattered to more than 250 people.....


‘Safety Matters Fun Day’ in Bedfordshire

The Development Officer attended the Bedfordshire branch of the British Horse Society (BHS) Safety Fun day on Saturday 12th November 2005, which attracted more than 250 visitors and their families. This event, sponsored by Mountain Horse, highlighted the benefits of riding and managing horses in a safe and secure environment.


There were scheduled talks throughout the day, from distinguished speakers; Garry Porter from Horsewatch, Ken Law the editor of ‘Riding Safely’ and Vet Helen Papworth MA VetMB MRCVS - all of which gave us the benefit of their invaluable experience, from beating thieves to avoiding hazards and dealing with injury. Peter Smith and Adrian Smith from Bedfordshire Police tirelessly offered free trailer reversing instruction for group or individuals and managed to keep up the good work all day!


The Shuttleworth Equestrian team put on a fun but serious road safety demonstration whilst the various trade stands offered generous discounts on many safety products, riding goods and equine services. New products were showcased including Mountain Horse SCS3, Barns Buckle safety stirrup mechanism and a whole variety of high visibility equipment from V bandz and Biggleswade Saddlery, who additionally offered tack marking and free safety equipment checking.


Meanwhile children had a fantastic time enjoying the bouncy castle/obstacle course, mini cars, bungee run and hobby horse challenge. Yve Wallace, Press Officer for the BHS Bedfordshire added, “Although the ‘Safety Matters’ day had a serious message for all horse riders, we also wanted to make this a fun day for the whole family to remember and enjoy, and by the very positive feedback we have received, I believe we managed to achieve this and look forward to making this an annual event!”


Entrance was free and there were mini prizes, to be won throughout the day. The free prize draw and raffle,  which included MH waterproof riding jacket, MH SCS3 boots, MH jodhpur boots, Bioflow magnetic horse boots, plus many more, were received with pure pleasure at the close of the day.


Everybody left with something, visitors were invited to take home a goodie bag stuffed full of useful and valuable information.  What a day!!

Source:  Extract from the BHS Monthly Report -15 November 2005


Concussion rules stretch to Point-to-Point riders

Point-to-point riders in Britain face another facet of medical bureaucracy when the season starts in January. Changes to the way concussion is managed will mean riders who are dazed in a fall must attend a testing centre to assess their reaction speed before returning to racing.


The move brings pointing into line with national hunt racing and eventing and eradicates the guesswork that has been a feature of concussion cases. Riders familiar with the tests list time and expense as the biggest drawbacks. As West Country champion Richard Woolacott said: "The tests take about 11/2hr, but I had to travel from my home in Devon to a centre in Swindon, which meant a day off work. I know of one rider who had to go three times before he was passed fit to ride."


By contrast, former national champion Leslie Jefford said testing was a good thing, ensuring riders were fit to compete, and adding that more testing centres were needed.


Previously, concussion cases were signed off for a set period - of between 48hr and 21 days - then cleared to ride by a course doctor.


Dr Michael Turner, the Jockey Club's chief medical adviser said the old-fashioned way was simply untenable, now that sophisticated equipment was in place to test concussion more accurately.


For the past two years, amateurs riding under Rules have had to take a personal or "baseline" test to assess their speed of reaction in a healthy state. If concussed they retake the test - and should they fail to match their baseline, they remain suspended.


• About 900 people ride in British point-to-points

• Some 500 (not riding under Rules) affected for the first time

• About 20 will suffer concussion next season

• Obligatory post-concussion test is free (approx Ihr 45min)

• Optional baseline test costs 40 (approx 45min)

• Testing centres: Edinburgh, Newcastle, York, Nottingham, Leamington Spa, Cambridge,

Swindon, London

• Concussed riders gain a red entry in their medical record book and must send it to Jockey Club HQ, then wait until they feel 100% (at least six days) before making a test appointment

• 85% of riders are cleared on first review

• Status quo retained in Ireland i.e. traditional fixed suspensions of 48hr, seven and 21 days

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 10 November 2005


Thanks to Roy Burek of Charles Owen for providing further information on sports concussion from The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC).


Weather Update - Two in three chance of a colder-than-average winter

The Met Office updated its Winter forecast for December - February 2005/6 on the 28th November 2005.

It continues to predict a two in three chance of a colder-than-average winter for much of Europe. If this holds true, parts of the UK - especially southern regions - are expected to have temperatures below normal.

There is also an indication for a drier-than-average winter over much of the UK.

Read more from The Met Office >>>


Sunny December

Provisional figures from the Met Office are showing that England and Wales were basked in sunshine in December (2005).

In total England and Wales had 63.5hrs of sunshine throughout the month - 42% above the long-term average - making it the 3rd sunniest December on record. Only December 2001, with 75.3hrs, and December 1962, with 64.6hrs, beat it.

While the sun shone the rain stayed away - with a provisional total of 69.3mm in England and Wales, 28% below average.

The mean temperature for the area was 4.2 C, which is equal to the long-term average.


Robin Cook's successor named

A successor to the late Robin Cook MP has been elected as chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Horse.


Laurence Robertson, Conservative MP for Tewkesbury, succeeds Cook - the first chairman of the group from its foundation in 2000.


"The object of the group was to give the ordinary horse a voice in Parliament, a voice that would receive support from all sides of the House of Commons and House of Lords," said Harry Greenway, a former MP who worked with Cook to establish the group.


Robertson has ridden from a young age.  He represents a prime equestrian area in Gloucestershire and takes a keen interest in all matters relating to the horse, including riding establishments in his constituency and beyond.

"I shall do all I can for the welfare and benefit of horses and their users," he said.

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 15 December 2005  


Suggett appointed to board

Graham Suggett has been elected director of equine development by the British Equestrian Federation (BEF).


Former BEF consultant director of breeding, Suggett devised and implemented the BEF's Young Horse Evaluations scheme and the Breeders' Quality Mark. He has also been a key figure in the establishment of the National Equine Database (NED).


In his new role, Suggett will look after equine policy and support the training and development of young horses, welfare and equine sports science.

"I'm delighted to still be involved," said Suggett.

 Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 1 December 2005 

The British Equestrian Federation>>>

Training Initiatives
There are differences between Agriculture and (for a better word) Equiculture but the HSE's initiative provides a simple training framework that should improve competence resulting in fewer accidents and ill health.  Achievements from such a framework are likely to appeal to insurers.  Isn't preventing the preventable accidents and securing lower insurance premiums one of the goals of the horse industry?  Training is a major key.
But as Riding Safely reported in the August - October Newsletter the Horse Industry is ahead of the game by having its own established Level 2 course  "Health and Safety with Horses" which provides recognised qualifications in equine safety.


Read more from the HSE >>>   


Find out more details about the course from Warwickshire College >>> 


See also the “Safety with Horses” Conference in the Diary Dates section


New qualifications to help reduce accidents and ill health on farms
New health and safety qualifications aimed at people working in farming have been recognised by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA).

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) initiative, vocational qualifications (VQs) for health and safety in agriculture are the first such qualifications designed specifically for the farming industry and will pave the way for a new generation of training courses to tackle the industry's poor health and safety record.

Last year 47 people were killed in farm-related accidents, and many more suffered serious injury or ill health.  In the last five years 231 people have died, including nine children under the age of sixteen. The aim of introducing the VQs is to focus attention on health and safety and reduce the number of injuries and deaths caused by accidents on farms.

HSE has developed the qualifications with the help of a number of organisations including the National Farmers' Union and the Transport and General Workers' Union, awarding bodies for the land-based sector, such as Lantra and the NPTC, and the QCA.
"The farming industry's health and safety record is poor, and these VQs are aimed at anyone working in the industry, from farm workers to supervisors and managers," explained HSE Inspector Alastair Mitchell. "These qualifications should help improve the education, skills and competences of the workforce and contribute towards making farms safer places to work."

Qualifications available under the scheme will be pitched at three different levels.  The Level 2 Certificate, Working Safely (in Agriculture/Horticulture), is designed for anyone working in the industry or about to join it, the Level 3 Certificate, Controlling Risks to Health and Safety, is aimed at supervisors, unit managers, and worker safety representatives, and the Level 4 Certificate, Managing Risks to Health and Safety, is for senior managers and owners of large agricultural or horticultural businesses. The Level 2 and 3 Certificates have received accreditation from the QCA, while work on the Level 4 Certificate is at an advanced stage and the qualification should be accredited in the spring of 2006.

Training courses for the health and safety in agriculture VQs are currently in development and should be available in early 2006. All three programmes will have a strong practical bias, and the content will be geared broadly to the type of farming with which the candidate is familiar. Level 2 will focus on the identification of farm hazards, and Level 3 will require candidates to undertake risk assessments.  At Level 4, management issues such as producing health and safety policies will be covered. At the end of the training period each candidate will be assessed to check that they have reached the required standard before the qualification is awarded.

Explanatory Notes
1. The QCA is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Education and Skills. It regulates the curriculum, examinations and assessments, from the foundation stage in schools through to work-related qualifications in colleges and at work. It accredits and monitors qualifications taken in schools, colleges and at work to ensure quality and the spread of best practice in every sector and for every type of qualification. Further details are available from the QCA website at

2. VQs are recognised throughout the UK within the national qualifications framework, and are related to industry and employment national occupational standards.  They are short courses of typically 20 to 30 guided learning hours followed by an assessment.  This may take the form of multiple choice questions and short written answers.  Level 3 and above require an evidence-based portfolio of work related to the candidate's place of work.

3. Further information on training courses for the VQs can be obtained from Lantra Awards on 024 7641 9703 or the NPTC on 024 7685 7300.
4. Agriculture has one of the highest fatal incidence rates of any major UK industry. For more details see the HSE website at
Source:  HSE  22 November 2005

People Welfare

Criminal Records Bureau checks compulsory for new British Horse Society Registered Instructors


The British Horse Society has registered with the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) in England and Wales, with Disclosure Scotland and the Department of Health in Northern Ireland and is the "umbrella body" for child protection checks within the equine industry.


Linda Haworth, Senior Executive of the BHS Examinations Department, said: "The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) and all its member Groups are aware of the importance of child protection issues within sport.


"As from 1 January 2006 all new BHS Register of Instructor applicants will be required to produce an Enhanced CRB Disclosure."


A CRB disclosure application, Disclosure Scotland application or Department of Health for N.I., disclosure application form will be sent out with the 2006 Register of Instructors application form.


Prospective Registered Instructors should allow at least 28 days for the check to be carried out.  Instructors may wish to apply for a check before submitting their Register of Instructors application.  If both applications are submitted together there will be a delay in registering the instructor, whilst awaiting the return of the disclosure.


At the moment this is a requirement for new BHS Registered Instructors only.  However, Instructors who allow their registration to lapse by more than 12 months will be required to produce a disclosure if they wish to renew membership to the register.


Linda said: "Children and young people are the future of the horse industry and any child who participates should be able to do so in a fun, safe environment and be protected from harm.


"The BHS is committed to devising and implementing policies and procedures to ensure all those involved comply with the Code of Good Practice."


For further information, please contact Linda Haworth on 01926 707783 or email examinations@bhs.org.uk

Source:  BHS - 21 December 2005              


Racing world tackles suicides

Recent suicides in racing have led to the formation of a group to investigate underlying triggers and potential industry-specific threads.


On 1 December, a meeting was held between organisations including Racing Welfare, the Samaritans, police, social services, and the Newmarket Trainers Federation.  Racing Welfare chief executive Cedric Burton said: "This is the first step to understanding the deaths of three stable lads" - all friends, and none previously showing obvious signs of distress.

In addition, he said the pooling of knowledge (in and out of racing) would start the process of assessing the "social health of the racing community" and help determine if anything could be done to prevent such cases.


Earlier this year, Racing Welfare and the Samaritans, set up a helpline. Next year it plans to introduce a mentoring system within racing yards. These moves are linked to the June 2004 Stable and Stud Staff Commission inquiry chaired by Lord Donoughue.


Burton said initial discussions with the Samaritans underlined that nothing about the three lads placed them in a suicide risk category.


On 6 January, Jeffery Brown, 40, working with Newmarket trainer David Loder, was found hanged at home. On 30 April, Eric Clamp, 33, was found hanged at Newmarket trainer and H&H columnist James Fanshawe's Pegasus Stables.  Inquest recorded a verdict of suicide in both cases.


Six months later (2 November), their friend Paul Matthews, 41, who worked as second head lad at Fanshawe's La Grange Stables, was found hanged.  An inquest date is yet to be set, but police are not treating the death as suspicious.


The subject of suicide was touched on during a 29 November progress report of the Stable and Stud Staff Steering Group, charged with implementing recommendations of the Donoughue report.


Group chair, Baroness Mallalieu, said the helpline set up by Racing Welfare this year was one of the first priorities in addressing staff welfare, recognition and respect.


In a related move, Stable Lads Association secretary Bill Adams announced the launch of clinics for staff to raise any concerns or questions (welfare issues, working conditions) in January-February 2006.

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 8 December 2005 

Horse Welfare

Welfare guidelines updated

The second edition of the Equine Industry Welfare Guidelines Compendium for Horses, Ponies and Donkeys is now out.


First published in 2002, it is now a well-respected authority on equine welfare standards, used as a reference for many local authorities, police forces and welfare organisations in the UK.


"It is welfare standards and care of the horse the whole industry signs up to," said Lesley Barwise-Munro of the British Equestrian Veterinary Association. "It's important when cases go to prosecution that there is a bench mark on key standards to refer to."


The compendium is available from the National Equine Welfare Council website or by post from the NEWC office at l0 Wales Street, Kings Sutton, Banbury, Oxon OX17 3RR.

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 1 December 2005 


Sugar beet welfare crime

Horse owners are being warned to lock feedstuffs away securely following the death of a horse after it was fed dry sugar beet by youths.


Chantine, a 14.2hh Welsh Cob, was found by her owner, Rosemary Humphries, on 7 October with hair from her mane and tail cut off and mucus oozing from her nose.


The mare's field companions, her daughters Sophie and Cazlin, also had their manes and tails cut and were in a similar state.


"I saw three teenage boys in the field and managed to corner one," said Humphries, from Maidstone in Kent.

"I called the police and when they arrived I was able to check the horses. Cazlin also had [the hair from] her mane and tail cut off, Sophie was barricaded in the field shelter with a rake and a whole sack of sugar beet was gone”.


Chantine was put down after developing colic symptoms a week later. The other horses recovered.


PC Nicky Griffiths, who dealt with the case, said three teenage boys were arrested in Maidstone and admitted to feeding the horses dry sugar beet.  However, she said they were unaware of the welfare risk to horses and would attend a crime diversion programme.

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 10 November 2005


Thieves target rugs as cold weather bites

Horse owners are being warned to postcode their rugs following a spate of thefts across Dorset and Hampshire.


"We're asking members to post code their rugs because there does not seem to be a better alternative, though we are always looking for crime prevention ideas," said Fiona Honeyman of Hampshire Horsewatch.  "One thing we do warn against is padlocking the rug to the horse — a few years ago an owner did try to do this."


During the past few weeks, rugs have been stolen from the backs of horses and ponies, both stabled and in the field.


Lorraine Whitbread, from Marchwood in Hampshire, has had her yard broken into three times in the past six weeks.  "It's like they're kitting out their yard, "she said. "The first time they took shavings, a shavings fork, shovel, a brush and a bag of sugar beet. This last time they took three rugs off my horses' backs while they were in the stables. One of them was clipped out and double-rugged. He was shivering when I found him in the morning."


Mrs Whitbread's rugs were postcoded (S040 4XA) with marker pen, but she is now having her rugs marked in large lettering with luminous paint.


Horsewatch national secretary Anna Brown said: "The theft of rugs from either stables or off the horse is common and nationwide.  Postcoding in large letters does spoil the rug, but it is the only deterrent. I suggest using luminous paint because this won't wash off in the rain."


D I David Ceilings from Hampshire Police Equine Division added: "You can never say postcoding stops thefts because the thief might not notice the rug is marked. But if you advertise the postcode, it will warn potential buyers and so act as a deterrent."

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 24 November 2005 

See also UK Horsewatch >>>


Arson by fireworks kills colt

A colt said to be worth 5,000 had to be put down this week after sustaining serious injuries when a Lancashire stud was set alight by fireworks.


The three-year-old, called Warrior, was rescued with six other horses after emergency services were called to the blaze at Coltsrock Stud Farm in Pimhole, Bury.


Fire fighters spent 3 hours battling flames that tore through stables, a barn and outbuildings. They broke down stable doors and led the horses to the safety of a field.


But Warrior had been trapped for longer than the others and was subjected to the effects of toxic smoke - as well as third degree burns after a piece of burning timber landed on his back.


Vets tried to save him, but had to put him down after he suffered kidney failure and his lungs filled with fluid.


Owner Stacey Roscow said: "We're devastated by this. He was such a beautiful horse - colts can be hyped up but Warrior was placid and lovely. This shouldn't have been allowed to happen. It was just senseless - I don't think the people who did this know what they have done."


A Greater Manchester Fire Service spokesman said the fire was believed to have been started by youths playing with fireworks in a nearby field.


Police are appealing for anyone with information to call Greater Manchester Police (tel: 0161872 5050) or Crimestoppers (tel: 0800 555111).

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 10 November 2005 

Arson attack on hunt kennels

The Essex and Suffolk Hunt kennels were subjected to an arson attack during the early hours of Sunday morning, during which 41 couple of hounds and four horses were let out.

Read more from Horse & Hound online >>> 

Source:  Horse & Hound Online 21 November 2005

For further information regarding arson and fire prevention go to the Fire Section of Waxed Jackets corner


Fractured forehead just below her riding hat
Her nose was broken into three pieces and her top jaw was completely loose

Kelly-Ann rides again


Expertly fitted hat “saved my daughter’s life”, says mother......


A mother whose daughter’s riding hat saved her life is urging other parents to make sure their children’s headgear is professionally fitted.


Kelly-Ann (9), from Suffolk, suffered a fractured skull when she fell from the pony she was riding after it reared up, went over backwards and crashed onto her head. She spent a fortnight in hospital, including five days on a ventilator.


Just weeks later Kelly-Ann, who also underwent surgery to reconstruct her face, rode again for the first time since her accident and is keen to continue enjoying her favourite hobby.

“Without a doubt, had she not been wearing a good riding hat that stayed in place, she would have been killed,” said her mother Carol. “The surgeon told us that her hat had held everything together and stopped further damage.”


Kelly-Ann’s riding hat, a Champion Junior Jockey Skull conforming to the BSEN1384 British safety standard and carrying the Kitemark quality symbol, was purchased from Ark Equestrian, Soham, in Cambridgeshire.


The saddlery shop is one of over 400 retail members of the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA), the body that campaigns for and monitors equestrian safety equipment.

“When we went to buy the hat, the staff took a lot of time and trouble to make sure it fitted properly and was comfortable,” said Carol.


BETA runs courses to offer its retail members professional training in construction, standards and testing of riding hats plus instruction in correct fitting techniques. Riders who shop with these retailers benefit from their expertise.


“Obviously parents want their children’s riding hats to meet the highest safety standards. But even the ‘safest’ hat won’t do the job unless it fits properly and the retaining straps are adjusted correctly,” said Carole White of Ark Equestrian.


Kelly-Ann’s family are experienced with horses. Kelly-Ann has her own pony called Chrissy, although she was riding a friend’s at the time of the accident, and her father Noel is a stud groom.

As well as training tack shop staff in hat fitting, BETA also developed and administers the internationally recognised BETA Body Protector Standard. To locate your nearest BETA trained retailer, contact 01937 587062 or info@beta-uk.org

Kelly-Ann and her pony two months after surgey
Kelly-Ann and her pony Chrissy two months after surgery to reconstruct her face

The BETA Group comprises the British Equestrian Trade Association, which represents UK equestrian manufacturers, distributors and retailers, and its commercial and publishing subsidiary Equestrian Management Consultants (EMC), also responsible for the BETA International trade exhibition.

To help owners and riders avoid compromising their own safety or their horses’ welfare, BETA runs a series of retailer training courses covering everything from wormers to bits and riding hats to body protectors. Successful candidates are entitled to a certificate for public display in their shops. Along with the BETA logo, this is an indication that customers are shopping with a qualified retail professional.

The association also produces advice leaflets on selecting, fitting and maintaining equestrian equipment – available free to all. To obtain copies, send an SAE to BETA, Stockeld Park, Wetherby, LS22 4AW. 


Contact Liz Benwell, BETA communications, tel 01354 638291/07889 733801 or communications@beta-int.com

Or Claire Williams, BETA executive director, tel 01937 587062 or claire@beta-uk.org


Woman dies in collision with horse

A female passenger lost her life when the car she was travelling in hit a loose horse.

Read more from Horse & Hound online >>> 

Source:  Horse & Hound Online 14 December 2005 


Carriage horses cause traffic chaos

Two carriage horses brought traffic in Ipswich to a standstill, after bolting from a funeral cortege. The Dutch-bred horses were lucky to escape major injury as they charged down the A12 in Suffolk.

Read more from Horse & Hound online >>> 

Source:  Horse & Hound Online 5 December 2005 


Accidental death verdict on rider 

A coroner has ruled a woman fatally injured while horse riding in Lincolnshire died accidentally.  At the time of her death there were reports a low flying plane was in the area - a fact confirmed at the hearing.

Read more from BBC News Online (16 December 2005) >>>


HSE News


Update on the review of the Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981

Following the review of the First Aid Regulations, HSE will not be seeking to make provision of first aid for the public a compulsory requirement for employers. In its guidance, HSE will continue to strongly recommend that employers should consider the public when conducting their first aid needs assessment and provide first aid for them. This is particularly important where a workplace has a large public presence such as educational establishments, places of entertainment, fairgrounds and shops etc. There is already a good voluntary response at such sites although by highlighting the issue, HSE hopes to encourage even wider application.

Read more from the HSE at:  http://www.hse.gov.uk/firstaid/review/dec05.htm

Source:  HSE December 2005


HSE publishes up to date guidance on safe operation of vehicles in the workplace

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published extensively revised and updated guidance covering the correct and safe use of vehicles at work.

Workplace Transport Safety: An Employers' Guide (HSG136) was launched by HSE at the Health and Safety Partnership Conference held 0n 14 December 2005 at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in London.

The comprehensive guidance provides advice on all aspects of workplace transport operations. Although primarily aimed at managers and supervisors, it is equally useful for safety and union representatives, contractors, the self-employed and employees.


Announcing its publication Carol Grainger, head of HSE's Workplace Transport Team, said:

"Workplace transport is the second biggest cause of incidents in the workplace, accounting for about 70 fatalities each year. The majority of these accidents are preventable. Reducing these casualties is an important priority in the HSE's work programme.

"The guide gives detailed advice on the key risks surrounding transport use in today's workplaces, and how to get to grips with controlling them. There's also a free booklet which provides an extensive overview of the subject, enabling those responsible for workplace transport to identify any areas of their operations where further help might be required".


The guide tackles general workplace transport safety issues and provides an introduction to workplace transport risk management. In particular, it offers information on assessing transport risks relating to site safety, vehicles themselves, and the people working with and around them and implementing a safe system of work. Later chapters offer specific guidance on typical workplace transport operations and common risks. Throughout, the book provides practical examples of risk control.


HSE has also published a revised version of Workplace Transport: An Overview. This is a free booklet that provides employers with a brief summary of the main issues that should be considered when planning workplace transport operations. Arranged similarly to An Employers' Guide, the 27-page booklet also includes specific sections about workplace organisation and operations. The booklet can be downloaded from the HSE website at http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/tranindx.htm


Further Information


1 Copies of Workplace Transport Safety: An Employers' Guide, ISBN 0 7176 6154 7, price 11.50, are available from HSE Books, PO Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2WA, tel: 01787-881165 or fax: 01787-313995. Priced publications are also available from good booksellers.


2 Copies of Workplace Transport Safety: An Overview, INDG199(rev1) are available from HSE Books, as well as from the website given above.


3 Workplace transport means any vehicle that is used in a work setting. It specifically excludes transport on the public highway; air, rail or water transport, and specialised transport used in underground mining.


4 The four main types of workplace transport accidents which employers and the self employed need to prevent are:


* moving vehicles hitting or running over people;


* people falling off vehicles;


* vehicles overturning; and


* objects falling off vehicles


5 Further information and guidance on ensuring workplace transport operations are carried out safely can be found on the HSE website at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/workplacetransport/index.htm

Source: HSE 14 November 2005


Riding Safely says that workplace transport, given the size of many equestrian businesses, may not seem an issue.  But people, horses and vehicles in close proximity can and do lead to accidents, injuries and damage to property and profits.  Better planning, training and awareness, and the appropriate use of vehicles, can avoid most of these accidents.

The free leaflet - Workplace transport safety - An overview available from  http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg199.pdf  and the Site Inspection Checklist https://www.hse.gov.uk/forms/transport/wtchk1.pdf  may help proprietors in assessing and controlling the risks in their own particular circumstances.


Responding to the Better Regulation Challenge

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) published its initial draft simplification plan on 29 November 2005 as part of its commitment to deliver the wider better regulation agenda, on its website. The plan can be viewed at http://www.hse.gov.uk/consult/live.htm

The HSE intend to meet the better regulation challenge set by government whilst improving health and safety outcomes and not reducing the levels of protection for workers or the public.

The plan sets out HSC/E's determination to develop legislation that is easy to understand and comply with to help secure stronger commitment from business. It also supports a risk based, targeted approach to enforcement. Key themes include:


      simplification for business to help them concentrate on improving outcomes rather than bureaucratic processes

      changing the culture, for example through a campaign to tackle risk aversion

      challenging policy makers' case for taking a regulatory approach and ensuring they address the impact of proposals on small businesses

      simplifying existing legislation

      joined up enforcement, including more effective partnership with local authorities to secure a consistent, targeted approach


The chair of the Small Business Council Julie Kenny welcomed the draft plan saying, "HSE's draft simplification plan includes measures to achieve credible reductions in the regulatory burden to business. I congratulate the HSE for sharing its early thinking in a clear and concise way and for asking small businesses, what more can be done?"

David Arculus, Chair of the Better Regulation Task Force said, "HSE's initial simplification plan contains a number of valuable initiatives to reduce the burden of regulation. The initial plan shows that independent regulators have an important role in delivering better regulation. I welcome HSE's commitment to listen to stakeholders and develop meaningful simplification measures."

Executive Chair of the Better Regulation Executive William Sargent added, "I congratulate HSE for identifying these early suggestions for simplifying their regulations affecting business. They will make a real difference. Early publication of this plan allows all businesses and organisations to comment and add new ideas for consideration."

If you want to find out more about the Government's better regulation agenda, please visit http://www.betterregulation.gov.uk

If you want to send comments on the draft simplification plan (see http://www.hse.gov.uk), please email simplification@hse.gsi.gov.uk


Further Notes


1. Better regulation across public and private sectors is a priority for the Government, and has the personal commitment of both the Prime Minister and Chancellor.  In the 2005 Budget the Government announced the publication of the Hampton and Better Regulation Task Force (BRTF) reports. These two key reports have set all Departments and regulators big challenges to reduce administrative burdens whilst improving effectiveness and outcomes.  As a key regulator, HSE has given a firm commitment to deliver the better regulation agenda and it has moved quickly to establish a robust programme in response to the challenge.


2. The key task in delivering the BRTF recommendations is for all Departments, including HSC/E, to prepare a rolling programme of simplification measures contained in a draft plan. HSC/E's plan will incorporate the recommendations made by the BRTF but also the wider better regulation agenda and the recommendations in the Hampton report e.g. inspections and mergers. In developing the plan HSC/E will take into account comments from stakeholders, and along with all Government Departments HSC/E will submit the draft to the Cabinet Office in January 2006.


Other better regulation agenda initiatives:


3. On 15 September 2005, The Cabinet Office launched a new way for businesses to challenge Government to simplify or scrap particular regulations they think are too burdensome. They have set up a new one-stop portal online at http://www.betterregulation.gov.uk where businesses can submit proposals for simplifying legislation.


4. Cabinet Office is leading an exercise to measure the administrative burden UK regulation puts on businesses. Using a UK Standard Cost Model it will measure across Government Departments the sum of the administrative burden. In March 2006 targets for reduction of admin burdens/costs across Government will be set. The results of this work will also feed into HSC/E's simplification plan. See http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk for further information.


Meanwhile Defra recently published its plans to cut bureaucracy and simplify regulations.

Lifting the Burden: Defra Initial Regulatory Simplification Plan can be downloaded from: www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/regulat/regulat.asp



Legislation Update


Compensation Bill

The Compensation Bill (first mentioned in the May – July 2005 Riding Safely newsletter) which provides a legislative framework for the regulation of claims management services and also contains a provision relating to the law on negligence is at the Grand committee stage in the House of Lords.

Read more from the Department for Constitutional Affairs (DCA) >>>



Legal Cases


Paralysed trainer wins 1.5m compensation

A Lincolnshire-based former racing trainer paralysed from the waist down when she fell off a rearing Anglo-Arab horse, has been awarded compensation of 1.5 million at London's High Court.

Read more from Horse & Hound online >>> 

Source:  Horse & Hound Online 23 November 2005  


Former jockey awarded 115,000 damages after he was hit by a car

Former jockey Terry Sturrock has been awarded 115,000 damages after he was hit by a car while crossing a road between paddocks at Lambourn. The racehorse he was riding, Indian File, was killed.


Sturrock suffered severe physical and psychological injuries as a result of the 2001 accident and can no longer work as senior work rider with trainer Barry Hills.


Richard Brooks of Withy King solicitors, who acted for Sturrock, said: "In this instance, careless driving has resulted in the loss of a valuable and talented horse and has also cost an experienced horseman his much loved career."


The driver was convicted of careless driving at Newbury Magistrates Court (19July2002), fined 500 and disqualified from driving for seven months.


Compensation was settled out of court and paid in September.

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 3 November 2005


Civil case hits polo insurance cover

The governing body of polo in the UK is no longer able to provide player-to-player insurance for its members following a French legal battle

Read more from Horse & Hound online >>> 

Source:  Horse & Hound Online 7 November 2005 

Crash driver offered course

Police have opted not to prosecute a driver involved in a single vehicle collision with a horse, who suffered two broken hindlegs and was put down at the scene.


Tracy Burlinge, 35, of Crawley, was riding her 16-year-old mare Holly at the time of the 30 May accident.


Last month she received a letter from police, informing her of the outcome of their investigation and decision not to prosecute the male driver. Instead, he will be offered the option of attending a driver improvement course.


In the letter, Superintendent Peter Coll, of Sussex Police Criminal Justice Department, said: "While there is sufficient evidence in this case to justify a prosecution, there is no provision in the law for a magistrate to order such retraining and the imposition of a fine, and penalty points will not do anything to correct poor driving habits."


Burlinge said about 20 people involved in similar accidents contacted her after her story first appeared in H&H (news, 16 June)

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 3 November 2005

The H&H 16 June story appeared in the Riding Safely May, June & July 2005 News Digest


New Forest stallions: a public threat?

Unease surrounds a Hampshire law firm's placement of a newspaper advert headlined "Stallion Accident", calling for people to come forward if they have been injured by a stallion in the New Forest.


Aware of this month's posting in the Southern Daily Echo and Bournemouth Daily Echo, New Forest Pony Breeding and Cattle Society chairman Gill Wright said its content was "worrying", but stressed the society was not involved - merely a bystander. "We are very worried about this," Wright said. "It certainly is a sign of the culture of the times. Nobody has an accident any more. It's always got to be somebody's fault."


The advert placed by Blake Lapthorn Linnell stated: "In the tranquil world of the New Forest it can seem that danger is miles away. However, there has been a recent serious accident where a lady was knocked down by a stallion released under the stallion scheme. The stallion ran out of control while chasing a group of mares. This lady had a narrow escape and suffered horrific injuries.  "We would like to find out whether anyone else has suffered similar injuries in an accident caused by a stallion released under the stallion scheme or anyone who has had a near miss experience."


When contacted by H&H, a spokesman for the law firm confirmed adverts had been placed in the two regional newspapers. Asked whether a legal case was being developed, he declined to comment "at this stage". Similarly, a spokesman for the Verderers of the New Forest - a statutory body sharing management of the New Forest with the Forestry Commission - declined to make any comment on the matter.


New Forest stallions are owned by people known as Commoners who own or rent property, giving them the legal right to depasture ponies on to the open forest after paying a "marking fee" to the Verderers.


All stallions must be licensed by the New Forest Pony Breeding and Cattle Society and a set number is selected at an annual "stallion passing" conducted by the Verderers, prior to being turned out with the mares.


Wright said any potential challenge to the right of ponies to roam the forest — dating back to medieval times - or stallions to be turned out with the mares would be "vigorously opposed" by the society.


She said people who visited the New Forest had to realise the ponies were wild and should be treated with respect, with one of the worse problems involving people feeding them.  "The things that I see sometimes horrify me," Wright said. "The worst thing I've ever seen was a man who had a child, aged about 21/2, whom he put on the back of a mare, stepped back and took a photo.  "Luckily, the mare just stood there, sleeping in the sun. He just happened to choose the right mare on the right day, but that should never have happened."

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 24 November 2005 


Looking Forward - Diary Dates

Safety with Horses

Introduced as “What we can do to help you manage equine health and safety” this training day will be held at Warwickshire College, Moreton Morrell on 20 February 2006.


Topics to be covered:


• Practical steps in health and safety management for all types of yard


• The basic responsibilities of employers with regard to health and safety


• Common areas which result in litigation against yard owners


• A training solution for yards, their staff, helpers and clients


• A practical management solution – an equine business pack


• Opportunities for industry based instructors to join the Warwickshire College team


Who should attend?


Anyone who is responsible in any way for those who ride or handle horses


Anyone involved in equine business


Anyone involved in the instruction or teaching of riding and stable skills


Conference fee 35* - this payment covers the event, lunch and materials and is required by 14th February 2006.


For further information/bookings contact: Equi Study on 01926 318338

email: safety-with-horses@warkscol.ac.uk      www.equistudy.ac.uk

*Part of the conference fee may be reclaimable under certain circumstances please apply for details at time of booking


Riding Safely recommends that "Safety with Horses" is definitely an event worthwhile attending!!!

Download the "Safety with Horses" poster >>>



BETA International 2006

BETA International is the world’s biggest equestrian and country trade exhibition. It takes place annually at the NEC, Birmingham, and in 2006 is on 19-21 February.

BETA International is open to bona fide members of the trade only.

Further information from info@beta-uk.org

National Equine Forum expands for 2006

The National Equine Forum (NEF) has thrown open its doors to equestrian trade representatives next year, in a move to achieve full industry inclusion.

Entering its 13th year in 2006, the forum provides an arena for discussion of topical and specialist issues. It will be held at the Royal Society, London, on 22 March.

For more details, contact Ailsa Chambers (tel: 01926 318234) or e-mail achambers@warkscol.ac.uk

Source:  Horse & Hound Magazine 6 October 2005  

If you know of any forthcoming equestrian safety related events please contact Riding Safely
Riding Safely is continuously updated and the newsletter is sent to subscribers every two months.
Riding Safely can keep you updated of forthcoming equestrian events that have safety related content.  If you're interested then contact Riding Safely and you'll be kept updated.


BETA's Body Protector Survey Continues......

If you own a body protector then BETA (the British Equestrian Trade Association) want to hear from you!  

BETA are still conducting a survey to obtain information regarding the use and effectiveness of body protectors which in turn will be used to assist their continued development and promotion.

Help now by getting more details from BETA and take part in the survey

Responses to the BETA survey have already highlighted body protector issues - read the interim report from BETA


and what's new on the site....

Site Updates

The easiest way for you to check out what's been added to the site since your last visit is to go to the website update section >>>

and finally....

Clamping down on illegal roadside adverts

New measures to crack down illegal roadside adverts that may distract drivers and blight the countryside were announced by the Housing and Planning Minister Yvette Cooper on the 21st of December 2005.


New guidance for local planning authorities (LPAs) on the control of outdoor advertisements will provide greater clarity and advice and will assist local planning authorities (LPAs) in enforcing the law.


This will be supported by a new national database due to be launched in 2006 containing information on companies who advertise illegally beside motorways.


Yvette Cooper said: "Some people think they can get round the planning system just by putting these ads on trailers in fields. They can't. It doesn't matter whether it is on a trailer or a hoarding, if it is stuck in a field by the side of the road it should be treated in the same way.  Many of these ads are dangerous as well as being an eyesore. It's time local authorities clamped down."


The Office of The Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) has secured the support of the Outdoor Advertising Council, Local Government Association, Planning Officers Society, National Farmers Union and the Highways Agency in tackling this problem.


There are good examples of LPAs tackling illegal advertising across the country using existing detailed published guidance.  But those in the horse world might be pleased to know that there are some advertisements which may be displayed without having to apply to the local planning authority for express consent and these include:


      temporary advertisements to be displayed publicising a forthcoming event;

      to advertise a short-term use of the advertisement site, such as announcing that there is to be a sale of goods or livestock on land or premises, such as a sale of livestock on farm premises;

      to advertise any local event being held for charitable purposes.


However, there are conditions and limitations attached, such as the size and the length of time the advertisement can be displayed.

Source: Office of The Deputy Prime Minister 21 December 2005  


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