Rejoice. Rejoice. Rejoice
‘Making Way for Horses’ manifesto launched by Equestrian Access Forum
Backed by British Horse Society, Byways and Bridleways Trust, British Driving Society, National Federation of Bridleway Associations and the South Pennine Packhorse Trust
‘Horse riders are a vital part of the community which uses and enjoys the commons. We join with our friends at the British Horse Society in arguing that riders’ rights should be respected and improved, so that our magnificent commons are a joy to horse-riders as well as walkers,’ says Open Spaces Society
The Equestrian Access Forum which consists of the British Horse Society, Byways and Bridleways Trust, British Driving Society, National Federation of Bridleway Associations and the South Pennine Packhorse Trust has just launched its manifesto entitled ‘Making Way for Horses’ at the BHS Access conference.
An ecopy will be published on the new look BHS website but until then only printed copies are available.
Key speakers at the conference were Nicola Hodgson and Sarah Bucks.
Nicola is the legal expert on common land and village greens from the Open Spaces Society and covered common land issues specific to equestrian rights which apply to some 200,000 ha of registered and unregistered common land. The OSS also used the conference to launch the OSS equestrian manifesto [see www.oss.org.uk for ‘Our Common Land’].
Sarah who is senior research officer for the BHS took the conference through her and Dr Phil Wadey’s recently published, must have, research guide Rights of Way: Restoring the Record [www.restoringtherecord.org.uk and on facebook] a must for all those claiming rights of way.
A copy of both the new publications were given to all those who are access officers for the BHS to help them with their work in maintaining and enhancing safe and off road equestrian access to the countryside.
Both these publication have resulted from the government’s insistence on retaining the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2026 cut off date for historical claims for rights of way. It is important that all historical claims are lodged with the relevant highway authority as soon as possible in case the Government brings forward the cut off date.
Other recent BHS publications relevant to equestrians were also available including Health Benefits of Riding and the BHS report on the Self Closing Gates trial
Also read - OPEN SPACES SOCIETY
COMMON LAND: A MANIFESTO FOR HORSE-RIDERS
The Open Spaces Society, Britain’s leading campaign group for common land, propose a manifesto for horse-riders on common land.
The society’s case officer, Nicola Hodgson, is speaking at the British Horse Society’s National Access Conference at Stoneleigh.
Says Nicola: ‘Common land is immensely important for recreational horse-riding. It provides extensive areas of open country where people can ride safely, in wonderful landscapes which have remained largely unchanged for centuries.
‘While walkers have rights to roam on all commons, horse-riders have rights on only some. We should like to see greater attention given to the rights and interests of horse-riders on commons.
‘We therefore propose the following actions:
‘Horse riders are a vital part of the community which uses and enjoys the commons. We join with our friends at the British Horse Society in arguing that riders’ rights should be respected and improved, so that our magnificent commons are a joy to horse-riders as well as walkers,’ Nicola concludes.
The health benefits of horse riding in the UK: