Equestrian businesses such as livery yards, riding stables and racing yards are subject to significant amounts of legislation relating, for example, to licensing, animal welfare, the transport of horses, health and safety, consumer protection and waste disposal.
Professional legal advice should always be taken before making business decisions.
Licensing and planning permission
Anyone intending to develop land or property into a livery yard, riding stable or racing yard should contact their local authority to find out whether they need planning permission.
Before trading as a ‘riding establishment’ (meaning a business that provides riding lessons or hires horses out for riding in return for payment) it is necessary to apply for a licence from the local authority in the area where the business is located. Licence applications should usually be made at least two months before the establishment is due to open.
For more information, go to:
- England, Wales and Scotland: www.gov.uk/riding-establishment-licence.
- Northern Ireland: www.gov.uk/riding-establishment-northern-ireland.
Before training racehorses, it is necessary to apply for a trainer’s licence. Applications can be made online at:
- England, Wales and Scotland: www.gov.uk/train-racehorses-licence-e-s-w.
- Northern Ireland: www.gov.uk/racehorse-trainer-licence-northern-ireland.