I think horses should be banned from public roads. Horses and their riders pay no road tax, they cause certain motorists to behave in an irresponsible way by refusing to pass these animals until they can pass with an absurdly wide berth. At the very least, people riding horses on the public road should pass a test and understand the highway code.

Why is this idea important?

Road safety is constantly on the agenda. Many riders that I have observed are unable to control their animals on the public roads. We are regulated to within an inch of viability in our cars so why should these animals be allowed to wander the highway unregulated.

90 Replies to “Ban horses from public roads.”

      1. But try to get the insurance company to pay for the damage caused. The car in question was parked with the driver talking to a friend at the side of the lane, horse got spooked by a bike being risen past. The horse backed into the car sitting on the bonnet. The horse was insured but not for any damage it might cause.

  1. A horse should be in a field, NOT ON THE ROAD. I have lost count the amount of times i have driven round a corner in my home town of Verwood, Dorset to be met by a teenage girl who is NOT in control of the horse. As a motorcyclist i have to virtually stop and ride right over to the other side of the road as not to sppok the horse, putting me in danger from cars coming towards me. And why do they like to ride during rush hour work traffic??? Somebody sort it out, NOW.

    1. I dont mind them being on the road but i agree with you there are two ladies who live near me have had rows withs lots of people from our villages plus they are constantly report people to the police for not slowing down. They ride 2 abreast on narrow lanes . Its alwys nearly dark when they ride out. The lean right out of the saddle to flag you down surely thats enough to frighten a horse.use their phones while riding
      And i know there are wide enough grass verges to get on
      Iam not sure who the think they are but they think they are pretty special

      1. it must be the same two women i passed yesterday on my bicycle. i couldn\’t get past them as they were two abreast and blocking the entire lane. i managed to get past them by cycling onto the verge. one of them then shouted \’fuck off\’ at me. when i went back to ask why, she accused me of cycling too quickly and passing too close to her stupid nag and then called me an asshole. in fairness, the nag seemed anything but stupid and was completely unfazed by my presence.
        this was all about somebody wanting to seize perceived power in order to bolster an inherently low self-esteem. it happens all the time and i really have no idea why these stupid creatures (i mean the riders) are allowed on the road.

      2. They ride two abreast for a good reason. To protect a horse who is learning and also to slow drivers down who would otherwise speed by and not navigate them. If you took a ride yourself on a horse on the road you would view from a different perspective.

      1. Those people are dealt with by the law. I have yet to see a horse rider be held accountable for their road-shitting public hazard on legs

    2. Sorry if a horse has a cart attached pretty sure the horse ends up kicking the cart also if the car is that close to the horse it needs a kick ! I think you’ll find must roads are Roman carriageways pack routes .

      1. I think you’ll find most roads were for Roman Armies marching, not your salami meat on legs.

  2. Firstly – most riders like myself hate riding on roads and only do it due to lack of choice. Farmers and councils have closed off bridle ways, often illegally, for centuries. There are now virtually none left and those which remain do not join up to allow passage.

    Horses have rights of carriage on the roads and in fact they were highways for horses and horse drawn carriages before cars were even invented. In the absence of any other route (bridle ways or accessible multi use tracks) roads are the only option for exercising and getting from one place to another.

    I am very familiar with the highway code thank you and the ignorance of this survey creator is astounding, but will certainly see it ignored in parliament. Those drivers giving wide berths are doing the correct thing as stated in the Highway Code. Read it!! As a driver I show the same curtesy when passing dogs and walker’s, runners, cyclists, children etc. Slowing down and moving over safely is necessary and is the law and is what most decent folk do as a matter of course.

    Finally, I am insured for accident and liability on any of my horses. Most responsible riders are. I don’t know of any cyclists or runners who are but this does not make me vengefully wish them off the roads. I suggest you use your energy to approach your local council to include more off road riding and carriage driving routes in their town plans. It would be much more productive as this survey us going nowhere.

    1. Horses should be banned from public highways, I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve witnessed a horse dancing dangerously around all over the road clearly frightened by the traffic. It’s a beast, unpredictable, the rider can never be in full control, a friend of my dads was killed by a horse rearing up and falling onto his vehicle.

      As for your argument that the closure of bridle ways has forced riders to use public highways, it doesn’t matter, the fact remains they are dangerous. Another thing I’ve noticed is the age of some of these riders, clearly children aged around 12-14 years old??? How on earth can that be safe???

      A solution to the problem would be some kind of disused warehouse surfaced with astro turf. The horses could be tethered securely while riders in full safety attire walk there beasts on some kind of belt driven treadmill. Flat screen televisions could be mounted in front of the treadmills showing suitable entertainment for horsey type folk such as fox hunting and other blood sports.

      1. “Horses should be banned from public highways” What an uneducated ignorant reply. Some bridleways are unaccessible without doing some so called “road work”. And horses need to to learn to be safe. What should be banned is IRRESPONSIBLE riders without common sense – unsafe horses shall be take out in the hours of low amount of traffic. They need to go out in order to learn to be safe. FFS – grow a brain.

    2. We are not in medieval days so yes 10% of roads were built for you…. back a hundred years ago. Most roads have been built recently and for cars etc. Why would u be so selfish and even put your pet at risk. We can all be stubborn. Cars and horses do not mix. Fact. There’s more reason and more cars than horses to be on road so maybe stick to fields. Or risk bro g smashed into on a blind bend. Your choice

      1. You are an a***hole who thinks he’s king of the road. You don’t deserve to drive on a road. Since when were roads ONLY for MOTOR vehicles? Do you or anyone in your family own a push bike – oh they do? Should they be smashed into on a blind bend too? Better hope you don’t find yourself smashed to bits in the back of a slow moving farm vehicle on a blind bend.

  3. I’m with you on baning horses.. But feels for the riders and people that love their hobby.. I’m not anti them… But seriously… It’s super dangerous! … And mega inconvenient.

    I would inform you though the “they pay no road tax” is incredibly weak… Especially since there is no such thing as road tax… It’s vehicle duty and is now proportional to emmissions. Roads are paid out of general taxation.. So by buying products for the horse and for the vet… Etc… Etc.. They’re paying for the upkeep of the road…

    1. No there not geoff that money doesnt go to the roads and they could pay insurance and a road usage tax untill then i say beep loudly and drive at the speed of the road not an uninsured animal on it

    2. On the “Road Tax” point. Horses empty their bowls whilst on the road. I dont want or need to see that. Nor would I want to drive through it. If i let my dog drop its feces all over the pavement, I am sure i would receive a fine or at very least a dirty look/abuse from other members of the public.

      1. But you run over squirrels and pigeons and leave them all over the road without picking them up don’t you, and that’s alright I suppose?

  4. moan all I like it won’t happen . I personally avoid roads as much as I possible can . some people are not lucky enough to have off road hacking. we don’t produce fumes or damage environment . learn to share people the road in not just yours.

  5. I’m not the biggest fan of horses but they have been around way longer than motor vehicles and understand that they do require exercise but as times have changed as they inevitably do, are they safe on roads now? They are no longer a form of transport or a beast of burden that they once were so I don’t believe they are but statistics should be the go to decider in this. Should all horses be banned from roads? I don’t believe they should. I think that a serious look should be made to ensure they have access but in a safe manner. Maybe a time restriction so that they are not on roads during heaviest periods, maybe a minimum competence level for horse rider to at least give best chance of controlling a situation should one arise? Maybe a revision to the law that enforces vehicle drivers to maintain a safe passing speed and distance?

    The argument that they should be on the roads because bridal ways are being closed or a distance away is a valid one also but this does not give a valid reason to have horses on the road for riders that are not deemed to be fully competent to control the horse in the event of an emergency situation. Bringing walkers and cyclists into an discussion about horses is also not a solution to a incredibly long running debate, we need to look at ways to bring an adequate resolution to this by working together.

    As an emergency worker I have seen a few to many incidents involving this argument and both sides have been at fault at differing times but as I said before the balance of blame is not for me to decide, statistics should lead that. What I will say though is that pretty much all of the incidents could of been avoided by BOTH sides having tighter restrictions. Horse feces is a hazard to some road users and this should be addressed, no set rules for a vehicle to pass a horse is a risk to a horse rider and other road users, horse riders should not be allowed to ride two abreast on roads which pose a higher risk to other road users, more bridal ways or existing bridal ways should be made available to allow riders of any level to enjoy this age old activity. This debate/discussion is nearly as old as the motor vehicle and that should be a red flag to this being taken seriously. People and horses do die due to this and many more will so that means that BOTH sides have to take this seriously and resolve this.

    I have my own opinion on this and that’s exactly what it is, my own opinion but I do hope that to save lives in the future that the powers that be that can make a change look at this and really take the time to make a better and safer situation for ALL road users.

  6. I think drivers should start racing past them and beeping loudly until they pay road tax and insurance on them

    1. The fact that you would consider that a viable option and risk the life of another individual as well as the horse and or another road user that may have to swerve to avoid the chaos you created only destroys your case.

      Abuse, intolerance, ignorance and a lack of respect for another’s life is not how you get change, you need to understand both sides of the argument and work together to get a resolution to the problem. You may of had a valid point and in some ways I agree that insurance should be compulsory and not just for horse riders but for any road user that has the potential to cause damage but you lose you point as soon as you show a distinct disregard for others.

    2. I think police and the judge will put people like you in prison then inmates beat you up

  7. Ban them!!!!!!

    1. You don’t need a license or training or insurance.

    2. Horses have no ‘brakes’ or ‘steering’ and do have their own minds.

    3. It is usually 15 year old girls that I see riding horses on the road, if I drive past one (carefully) and the horse spooks then I will be held responsible! If I drove past another car and the other driver got scared, well that’s his own fault.

    4. There is no age limit! Driving is MUCH safer. Even scooters require basic training, insurance, tax and an age limit.

    5.Most of the time there is a field there and a horse riding on the tarmac next to it. If you own a horse then as far as I am concerned one of the associated costs should be owning or having access to land for it to exercise. If you cannot afford the land, you cannot afford the upkeep of a horse. .

    1. There might be a field but maybe the horse isn’t allowed in it, like one of the farms near the track I ride to get to the beach is for cows so the horses can’t go into it. Going onto the road is our only option and that’s not our fault and if you say anything like “well they should be ridden in an arena” it’s a refreshing sight for the horse that allows it to relax and just let of a bit steam. Steam they can’t let off in the arena. The horses that go out where I ride can be controlled easily on the road and are easy to control in general so there is no danger ther for control. Horses do actually have “breaks” and “steering” it’s things called reins. You’ve clearly never ridden a horse before otherwise you would understand the fact that there are “breaks” and “steering”. We use the reins to turn the horse and we gently pull on the reins to stop the horse.

      1. It’s a wild animal, a car will stop if you brake, a horse may or may not even if trained. Most horse riders do not go on roads because they need to… They do it through choice. The horse don’t get up and go, come on Lauren, sod the field today I fancy some nice hard concrete and lots of big scary cars. Just stubbornness and ignorance and lack of love for your

  8. Hmmmm let’s think… Is it a good idea to have a wild animal with no insurances no license no age limits on a busy a road with blind bends??? Either change the speed limit to 20 mph on all a roads or ban horses. Too dangerous now. We not in dark ages. And why do u need to ride on roads it’s a hobby. So why risk your life n horses life through a hobby. Think I may start walking my dog on a blind bend…. or not because I’m not an idiot

      1. unfortunately they are there and one day a big truck on a bend will get over it and you as well just because of your hobby.stay off the roads and ride on bridal path’s or private property and think of the horse and not your self and children.

    1. We can’t ride on foot paths like you can walk your dog on foot paths. Ummmm,,, lets see you are an idiot.

    2. Wow talk about inconsiderate. I happen to live near a narrow country road, which contains many blind bends, and is so narrow there is no pavement down most of it.

      Its dotted with houses and farmland on both sides: in fact, some houses have front doors that come right out onto the road.

      Guess what? People walk their dogs down that road BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO CROSS, and so do families with children to get to their homes. Tractors have do come up and down the road. So do pedestrians, and the postman.

      Yet still motorists insist on bombing down the Middle of the bloody road at 70mph, without considering there might actually be people coming to and from those houses, tractors, farm traffic, or cars coming in the other direction. The number of times we’ve had to pull over because of such idiots I’ve lost count of.

      Get over yourself: cars are not the only moving things that happen to be on or near roads. Unless you want to get up a petition banning cyclists, pedestrians, horses, dog walkers, tractors, children crossing to get to school and so on just accept that.

    3. Your a fool. Do yourself know some cars who btw can reach huge speeds don’t have the best brakes or steering because their brake pads are worn, or their tyres, or their driver isn’t quite with it, or over the limit, or it’s wet on the roads and braking distance has increased……

  9. Horses should not be allowed on any roads. What idiot would take a 1/2 ton+ animal onto roads that are around 50/60 MPH speed limit. I cant see what might be around a corner, am i expected to slow down to 20/30MPH at every corner. I would soon have angry string motorist behind having a go at me. Its bad enough hitting a pheasant with your wind screen when out driving, but possibly having a horse come through it with possibly a child in the front seat, i cant bear thinking about it.
    A friend of mine has to cull deer in Sussex due to the amount being hit & the danger to the public.

    1. I’m so sorry that the possibility of horses on the road prevents you being able to drive around blind bends at 50-60 mph. Just because a road has a national speed limit sign it doesn’t mean that it either safe or appropriate to drive at 60mph all the time regardless of other road users
      If you could be sure they weren’t there, would you drive like that? Have you not thought about cyclists, dog walkers, a farmer in a tractor or god forbid wildlife like deer or domestic animals such as sheep and cattle.
      Animals don’t hurl themselves at cars for the fun of it, drivers drive to fast for the conditions and are unable to stop. Yes deer do jump out in front of cars, but the danger can be minimised by driving at an appropriate speed for the conditions, visibility and likelihood of wildlife.
      Horses are part of our way of life, they have been around for centuries, in this age we need perhaps to show a little tolerance for other people, be them drivers, cyclists, horse riders or walkers. We are all vulnerable on a road and should behave in a manner that minimises our own vulnerability and the potential t put others at risk.

      1. Have been for centuries but now what is the ratio of cars to horses? Almost all roads were built with cars use being primary, the fact is on small roads unless u drive 20mph everywhere, a horses being on it is a danger, u can’t argue that, they have no brakes, they hate cars, so why would u put your horse through that? How many horses just let themselves out for a stroll on the road? None, it’s down to the riders choice. Horses were here before concrete was invented or stone roads if you Wana be historical. They are naturally meant to be on grass. Humans choose to ride them. Use a field or accept no matter how someone drives your decisions cause everyone including horse a danger.

      2. Craig, you might as well use the same reasoning to argue that pedestrians should not walk on or anywhere near roads. Nor should they be allowed to cross them.

        The simple fact is that they have to. To get from A to B, like everyone else. Many people have houses that open out onto roads: or live down country roads where there is literally no pavement.

        Children are not made to be hit, and they regularly inconvenience other road users by having to cross to get to school, or get home, or whatever. Children should be banned from roads: they should be confined to houses, school fields, or playpens.

        Not going to happen though, because people have to travel. The roads do not exist for the sole use of cars: but we don’t see pedestrians and cyclists getting up petitions to ban them do we?

        For the record, there is a school near me down a residential street where they had to build bollards to stop motorists mounting the pavement to overtake slow-moving traffic, thus risking the lives of mothers and children, and residents of said houses. Cos here’s the thing: motorists can be dangerous, selfish and inconsiderate too: some, even some who should know better, will mount the pavement to save seconds even thought they are not meant to be there and are knowingly endangering others.

    2. Yes you are expected to drive to the road conditions , blind bends included. It’s exactly because of fools like you that roads can be dangerous. If you can’t see around a bend then slow down and consider the what ifs.

  10. They are a total menace on the roads. I drive a refuse lorry in country villages and they get spooked by the orange beacons flashing. I know what the horse people are going to say, “switch them off when horses are about”. But sometimes I’m out of the wagon and I can’t, it’s just not practical. They also get spooked when the vehicle revs when the bin is raised. I agree we should all be courteous, and I’m not just blaming horses here, everyone seems to be in everyone’s way these days, but the fact is roads are dangerous and it’s just not safe for an unpredictable, potentialy dangerous animal to be on them. If the horse could speak I bet it would say, “Will ya stop taking me oot on that road, ah divvent like it man” (geordie horse obviously)

  11. What if you have got to ride on the road? I know people who have no choice but to ride on roads or lanes because they have other horses in their fields and all the bridleways have been converted to roads. A lot of riders on roads have had at least 10 near misses. I’m very sorry that some of us aren’t as considerate as riders could be but sometimes it just isn’t safe for us to take a hand off the reins to wave. Please can you try and pass horses wide and slow. Sometimes we have to ride two abreast to protect inexperienced or young horses. We wish we didn’t have to ride on roads and if you don’t want us on roads campaign for more bridleways not to ban us.

  12. Until recently, horses did have right of way on the roads. We only ride in roads usually as we can’t get access field to field and have no choice. Try 6 mths in a motorbike in the winter or ride a horse on the roads to find out how out of touch SOME ignorant drivers are

  13. Unbelievable!! horses are insured, most of us are also drivers at some point in our lives so pay road tax. We cannot just ride in a field – what stupid comments are these?? I loathe riding on the road having been backed into by an ignoramus, and whilst there is a lovely field path to the centre I go for lessons there is only a footpath with styles, that are not there for us to use a jumps even if it were safe/legal to do so I HAVE TO USE THE ROAD!! Have some consideration and respect, as I driver I have to put up with some of you, who have no idea how to drive in the country, so race down single track lanes putting every road user in danger, taking bends like you are on an F1 track so stick to the motorways when you can only harm each other and if you cant get to where you want just by using a motorway, learn the HIGHWAY CODE

  14. Car, bus, and lorry drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists, pedestrians, typically use the road because they need to go somewhere. Nobody needs to use a horse for transport anymore. The only reason anyone rides a horse on the road is for pleasure. If you take a horse on the road, you know that you are creating potentially dangerous situations for yourself, the horse and other road users but choose to ignore this because you care more about your pleasure than the inconvenience and danger. It’s a selfish decision.

    1. Or maybe, just maybe its because the roads were built across farms and fields, and the riders have no way to get from one place to the other except by crossing or walking along the road.

      You know, they don’t just have magic fairies that can fly all the people who just happen to live on roads, or have roads next to their lands to safer places. They don’t just clear the area to build a road.

      The fact is, some roads, especially in rural areas, were very poorly thought out and built.
      Often they intersect through residential areas, but are not wide enough to allow for pavement. People who live there have no choice but to walk or ride down those roads, yet the idjits who built them decided it was still a good idea to allow for national speed limit on a blind bend with houses and farms on both sides, not supposing anyone would ever need to come in our out of them.

  15. All you ignorant drivers are more a danger than anyone. Open your eyes. I have video evidence of drivers driving dangerously and over the speed limit and on purpose for no reason at all. If you used your common sense by passing WIDE AND SLOW there would not be a problem. DRIVERS are creating potentially dangerous situations for yourself, the horse and other road users by speeding and driving like maniacs and having no common sense. People these days are so self absorbed and walk around with their eyes shut you all need to wake up. We are in the 21st century, yes we have a problem that needs to be address not ban people from using the roads, we all need access to. What we need are more bridle ways re-opening adjacent to the roads to avoid all the impatient psycho drivers that think riders should be banned from the roads. You type of drivers should be banned! You shouldn’t even have a licence.

    1. Exactly this. They talk of horses being a danger on the road and then promote no tolerance for other road users, or hey lets beep our horse or rev our engines past them. Or maybe let’s just keeps speeding around the rural roads at crazy speeds. Yay!
      But hey horses need to be banned because they Are dangerous.
      Wake up, smell the coffee. Consider how dangerous YOU are I. Your metal car which is a weapon in itself.

  16. It’s a difficult discussion, yes horses have been on roads since forever, but as with many things this changes as technology moves forwards. Earlier today I was driving home and was rounding a corner as about 25-30mph and was met by two riders on the inside of the bend, smacked the breaks on and skidded towards them (mud on road and downhill). It was a real eye opener and I’m thankful that nobody was hurt, I was in the wrong, it could be argued that had it been a car or tractor coming the other way it would have been more visible? I think either way (and I understand I was 5-10mph too fast) a horse rider is incredibly vulnerable, had there been a collision I don’t have to tell you how easily someone and certainly the horse could be hurt or killed! My point is that its simply dangerous, cars are designed with airbags, crumple zones etc, horses unfortunately are not, I’m not saying give up your hobby but just remember that in the event you do get hit (I am driving slower from now on after this encounter) by someone driving a bit too fast, you could die……. and your best pal Herbert the horse.

    1. Sounds like the road near my house. We are in the country, but its not very rural, more suburban, with two major roads near us.

      Yet there is a country lane so narrow that there is barely enough space for two cars to pass, and no pavement down most of it: despite the fact that there are houses and farmland all the way along it. Some of the houses have front doors which literally open out onto the road.

      Its full of blind bends, but of course, pedestrians regularly have to walk along the road, as well as kids, dog walkers, cyclists and horses. As well as tractors, at certain times of the year. But its still National speed limit: and people go down the Middle of the road at 60MPH not even considering that there might be someone coming the other way, or someone coming out of one of the houses which are clearly visible.

      Lost count of the number of times we’ve had to pull over and slow down or stop (sometimes near enough going into a ditch), because of someone speeding down the middle of the road from the opposite direction.

    2. And this is a lesson isn’t it? Because indeed a slow moving tractor might have met you and you’d have had no where to go and may have smacked into it. Should we ban tractors? I’ve had same experience with a tractor and it seriously moderated the way I drive on rural roads.

  17. Ban horses on the roads! Or at least have the police pull each one over and check for insurance papers, ownership details, vet check, blacksmith shoe tickets and that both horse and rider are wearing the correct day glow reflective attire. Fines should be brought in place for those who don’t obey to road safety act.
    Then you can ban cyclists after this. But at least you can pass these more easily.

    1. Oh yes, then please lets ban pedestrians after that. Those inconsiderate little buggers always CROSSING our roads to get to their bloody houses, or schools. Oh and trains. So annoying having to stop for the gates.

      Roads only for cars, regardless if they pass right in front of your house or through your fields.

  18. Omg I’ve never read such bigoted rubbish!! Horses will never be banned from the roads FACT! Horses,Cyclists and don’t have to pay road tax as they do not emit pollutants! Horses are not the problem it’s the idiots behind the wheel of the car! Who think they own the road, wake up horses are here to stay. And for the idiot who said why should he have to slow down whilst doing 60mph around blind bends (rofl) then you sir need to have your licence revoked!

  19. What about horses and traps with 13 year old yobs making the poor animal trot as fast as possible head in the air and terrified

  20. In my area there are always little girls between the ages of 12-16 without an adult riding side by side on skinny 60mph side roads.

    Horses aren’t used for transport anymore… They are for pleasure… You don’t see me tearing it up on a quad bike and to be honest that would be safer than a horse on public roads.

    Horses are for pleasure purposes and should be transported on a truck from point to point.

    Having horses on the road is a danger to everyone involved and anyone who does it is totally selfish because they are knowingly putting peoples lives at risk so they can enjoy their hobby without the inconvenience of using your own land for it!

    Not only this but you don’t see them cleaning the s*it up after themselves which creates a hazard for us motorcyclists. I have had a couple of near misses where I have slid on a corner because of horse s*it. Why can they ignore these laws but a dog walker will get a fine for doing the same.

    At the very least horses should have the same age restrictions and licencing requirements as cars.

    Unsupervised children riding their poo machines on winding fast roads is just a recipe for disaster.

    1. Ha, you’re more likely to skid on a squished squirrel! Enter ride a little more safely in future hey?

  21. If I cant fly tiny RC aircraft near roads – purely for fun, not filming, whilst posing no risk to anyone or anything, why the hell should someone be able to take a dangerous animal guided by an 11 year old on the roads.

    That thing could rear up and kill a cyclist or motorist or pedestrian, at any moment.
    If I import an Elephant should I be able to ride it on the roads. Because I enjoy screwing bits of metal to its feet to force it to walk on the wrong terrain.

    If you have to take the horse on the road, you don’t have enough space for a horse.

  22. Some people are saying that horses have been on the roads for centuries.
    They say that because of this, they have the right to continue riding on the roads.
    What they ignore are the facts, the horse & horse drawn carriages were responsible for many deaths on the roads of towns & villages back in the day, people learned very quickly to get out of the way & not cause an obstruction because the horse is much bigger than a person.
    So times have MOVED ON, the motor vehicle is now the main form of transport that most people use, but most people do not use a vehicle for pleasure alone, in fact driving is no longer a pleasure on our overcrowded roads, there are just to many other road users who seem to think that their survival is someone else\’s responsibility.

    I have had near misses with people who think it ok to walk a horse & carriage along a fast A road, another horse rider thought it ok to move across the road & almost block it to make me slow down, even though I was only doing 20/25 & the road is 30 ft wide, I have had very serious talks with people who walk 5/6 abreast on country roads with others who are physically unable to move quickly.
    They dress in dull clothes that make it hard to see them when I am in sunlight & they are in shadow!

    So in conclusion, I believe that horses must be banned from public roads.

    So should people who don\’t give a monkeys about their own safety!


  23. I have made many enquires and looked on several advice pages online. Nowhere can I find a definitive answer to ( can a horse be ridden against the flow of traffic in a one-way street ). Highway code says SHOULD this surely is advisory, not compulsory. Tried UGov. Tried Ministry of Transport. Apart from common sense where is it in law.

  24. I ride my horse on the roads because the bridleways have been taken away, and I can no longer cross country due to fenced off/hedged off fields.
    I also have a trap I use as well, and this is the one that most ignorant people hate more than my horse, but hey, stupid people are never going to understand the way of life in the countryside so stuff them I say. I’m insured naturally, I don’t drive a car though, and so it’s either cycle to the shops, travel five miles to the nearest bus stop which only has a bus every two hours but none on weekends, or walk everywhere just to please you ignorant people?
    Nope, if you can’t stand the country way of living then please stay in your dirty smelly cities.
    I’m glad I moved to the country, and Misha (my horse) and I are well known in the local village.
    BTW, I’m in my 50’s, male, and I run a web design company, so I’m no luddite.

    1. Good for you! Well said. After all if these motorists don’t like it they shouldn’t drive in the countryside. I completely agree with you.

  25. Horses were the first transport on the roads and deserve to be on them cars cause pollution horses don’t if your incapable of passing safely you shouldn’t be driving as with the road rage we suffer people forget it is an offence n can be reported !!

  26. Honestly some of the arguments I’ve heard defending horse’s are ridiculous! IF YOU WANT A HORSE THEN YOU A. NEED TO HAVE THE LAND TO KEEP THEM ON. If you don’t live close to this land THEN YOU NEED ENOUGH MONEY FOR A HORSE BOX AND A SUITABLE CAR TO TOW IT. Don’t complain that you need to get from A to B. The world has changed and believe it or not, cars are the priority now NOT HORSES. If you don’t have the land and money to upbring a horse, DON’T GET ONE. B. THEY ARE ANIMALS, MEANING THEY ARE UNPREDICTABLE. No matter how much you train a horse, you can’t control it like a car. There are no regulations towards horses unlike cars! How can a teenage girl aged 15 be allowed to take a half a ton animal on a road with a national speed limit along with all manner or vehicles . Lastly, C. People are making out like they depend on their life with their horses ITS A HOBBY. Have you thought about the welfare of your horse? If you say yes then come up with a valid argument as to why horse’s spook over the smallest thing let alone potentially, A LORRY other than ‘car’s drive too quick and should show some consideration’ ITS A ROAD!!!!! CARS ARE THE PRIORITY! At the end of the day, if you don’t have the money, land and resources to upbring a horse DON’T GET ONE.

    1. Cars are inanimate objects. It is the human animals that drive them that create problems. Humans are very unpredictable. Motor vehicle drivers are the cause of around 1800 deaths on British roads each year. Horses cause no deaths and horse riders virtually none.

      Motor vehicles shorten people’s lives through pollution as well. I could go on to the subject of climate change but I would never finish.

      Horses are more than just a hobby they are a way of earning a living for thousands.
      Riding Schools, livery yards, trainers etc etc.

      Given the above would it not be more sensible to discourage motor traffic and reduce speed limits.

  27. Alexander, cars are not the priority on the roads. The highway code applies to ALL road users, whether they be motorists, pedestrians, cyclists or horse riders. Attitudes like yours is the brunt of the problem here.

    Your argument about horses being unpredictable- should we cut down all trees that are near roads? They could fall in high winds at any time and inconvenience a driver?

    For what it’s worth, I don’t ride my horse on the road anymore. I value his (and my) life too much and am ashamed to say I have been bullied off the roads. I agree that there are some horse riders who ride on inappropriate roads, are not dressed appropriately in high viz etc and do not behave in a courteous and responsible way. There are always individuals who give the group a bad rep.

    What I would say however is that the majority of riders ride their horses on narrow country lanes, usually single track with no white lines, yet drivers seem to think they can drive these roads as if they were main A roads. I 100% agree that horses shouldn’t be ridden on fast, busy main roads, that is asking for trouble. But if motorists drove safely down these roads, gave horses plenty of space and took their time passing, 90% of the time, there would no issue.

    I resent being told I should not ride my animal in the middle of the countryside. Presumably from some of the comments on here, these people would like to see the UK encased in concrete? Or do you think countrywide is just there to look pretty and spend a Bank Holiday in before going back to your towns and cities?

    We cannot ride in fields we do not own, there is a serious lack of bridleways and expecting every horse rider to own enough land to ride their horse around is unreasonable- there simply isn’t enough green space in the country.

    The majority of (responsible) horse riders are insured, and road maintenance is paid for through taxes, so any arguments regarding ‘road tax’ is irrelevant.

    The main problem is an increasing lack of patience and tolerance among drivers these days, and some motorists are downright aggressive.

    If you have ever allowed yourself to get angry because something (whether it be another car, a child crossing the road, a tractor or a horse) has held up your journey by 30 seconds, I suggest you take a careful look at yourself. There is more to life…

  28. Definitely should be kicked off from road. Speed of horse on the road is close to zero. In UK there is plenty of blind bends. Suddenly in front of your car you have animal and ofcourse you are expected to slow down to neatly zero mph. Even if car passing horse with nearly zero speed often they start “dancing ” dangerously. For example of bicycles also rides slowly but you can pass them with no risk that they start kicking and jumping across the road

  29. Bad idea. What needs to happen is as follows:
    1. On all country roads without a white line down the middle, there should be an enforced speed limit of 30mph, and they should be designated as ‘green roads’ where horses, bikes etc have priority over all motorised traffic.
    2. All other roads should have, by law, well kept verges of at least 4 meters wide on both sides with appropriate tracks for cyclists and walkers, and suitable arrangements for all Non Motorised Units at junctions and roundabouts. Motorists should be made to take responsibility for all their rubbish, especially following an accident.
    3. With trunk and other A class roads, when they have a suitable green road running alongside, but separate, with frequent crossings of the A road at suitable points, using bridges and underpasses to a good standard, THEN horses can be banned from them.

  30. Absolutely rubbish idea, horses have just as much right to use the as people in vehicles.
    can i state that you clearly don\’t know the meaning of road tax \”\’Road tax\’ is car tax, a tax on car emissions\”- quoted by the first website a saw when i looked for the definition. Horses do not produce and cause the same pollution as vehicles. secondly horses came before cars did and without them so much wouldn\’t be here today. I will also state that no equestrian will chose to use the road and risk both their soulmates life as well as their own. we avoid them as much as possible because of complete idiots like YOU! unfortunately too many roads are built in the countryside and areas populated with horses/where horses live.
    I shall state another point that you where complaining about riders not being able to control their horses on the road. HORSES ARE UNPREDICTABLE ANIMALS WITH MINDS OF THEIR OWN—JUST LIKE YOU!!

    so before you think about ruining someone\’s day make sure you know the law and the rights-Maybe you should take an exam on horse behaviour and how to pass them safely, because from my guess you\’re one of those complete retards who do not care what so ever!

    I suggest that you should grow up and treat others with equality on the roads, because no horse and/or rider chooses to use the road-we avoid them as much as possible to keep our horses (who we love more than anything ever!!!!!!!!!) safe.

    yes this is coming from a 15 year old girl who\’s fed up of putting her horse in danger when using the roads. and for your information we do have ride and road safety tests that we pass to ensure our knowledge on the roads is at the best it can be.


    1. \”you clearly don\\’t know the meaning of road tax \\”\\’Road tax\\’ is car tax, a tax on car emissions\\”- quoted by the first website a saw when i looked for the definition.\”

      Then you didn\’t look very hard. That is its current definition used by the government as an excuse to increase revenue in a way that is defensible to the populous. Originally the Road Fund Licence was introduced in 1920 and hypothecated to pay for the expansion of the road network in the UK. It ceased to be hypothecated in 1936 but remained in existence until 1955.

      As such your argument that VED is for emissions only is flawed. Just wait for electric cars to take over. They will be taxed to the same level with different reasons being expressed by the government because they simply can\’t afford to lose that revenue stream.

      \”Horses do not produce and cause the same pollution as vehicles.\”

      In terms of sheer quantity, of course, you are correct. Horses and horse ownership, however, does result in CO2 and NOX emissions. Consider all of the products you use to care for your horse, their production, packaging and transportation. Transportation of horses themselves. The construction, maintenance and lighting of the various structures associated with equestrianism. Even methane production direct from the horses. Everything we do has an environmental impact.

      Apart from the obvious speed differential, the conflict between horse rider and vehicle driver is not as a result of the mode of transport, but the individuals operating them and is often nothing more than a lack of courtesy on both sides. Drivers who do not slow down enough when approaching & passing horses and horse riders lack of awareness of their surroundings when on the road are commonplace.

      A simple thank you wave or nod of the head from both parties goes a long way but is increasingly rare these days, which in turn discourages courteous behaviour on both sides.

    2. “you clearly don\’t know the meaning of road tax \”\’Road tax\’ is car tax, a tax on car emissions\”- quoted by the first website a saw when i looked for the definition.”

      Then you didn’t look very hard. That is its current definition used by the government as an excuse to increase revenue in a way that is defensible to the populous. Originally the Road Fund Licence was introduced in 1920 and hypothecated to pay for the expansion of the road network in the UK. It ceased to be hypothecated in 1936 but remained in existence until 1955. It is only comparatively recently it has been linked to emissions.

      As such your argument that VED is for emissions only is flawed. Just wait for electric cars to take over. They will be taxed to the same level with different reasons being expressed by the government because they simply can’t afford to lose that revenue stream.

      “Horses do not produce and cause the same pollution as vehicles.”

      In terms of sheer quantity, of course, you are correct. Horses and horse ownership, however, do result in CO2 and NOX emissions. Consider all the products you use to care for your horse, their production, packaging and transportation. Transportation of horses themselves. The construction, maintenance and lighting of the various structures associated with equestrianism. Even methane production direct from the horses. Everything we do has an environmental impact.

      Apart from the obvious speed differential, the conflict between horse rider and vehicle driver is not as a result of the mode of transport, but the individuals operating them and is often nothing more than a lack of courtesy on both sides. Drivers who do not slow down enough when approaching & passing horses and horse riders lack of awareness of their surroundings when on the road are commonplace.

      A simple thank you wave or nod of the head from both parties goes a long way but is increasingly rare these days, which in turn discourages courteous behaviour on both sides.

  31. You people are all stupid .
    Horses were on the road long before cars.
    Horses don’t pay tax because they don’t produce emissions that are ruining the planet.
    The Highway Code is there to protect horse and rider also.
    The for the wide berth is for the safety of all road users, similarly to the wide berth you would give when passing a slow moving vehicle.

    Passing horses wide and slow reduces risk of harm to all road users .

    You townies don’t know what your talking about – move back to the city.

    1. The candel was before the bulb, doesn’t mean we live by candel light, that is a very poor argument.

      I always pass wide and very slow, but very few riders even try to let cars pass, instead keep going without a care for anyone else, even people in a hurry to loved one in an emergency.

      I live in the country always have, the horse riders I know who are as you say country do not ride on the roads, it is the people from housing estates who just own or ride horses which I see on the roads as I can see where they come from.

      We should pass wide and slow but riders should have some consideration for others

  32. I think your point in your argument is absolute rubbish. horse riders are people so they do have to pay road tax as they probably also drive a car. some drivers are also reckless and the only way to get to most bridle ways is to go down a road. people need to exercise there horses and especially during this time. most peoples local schools/arenas are closed due to corona virus and for anyone who has horses at home and doesn’t have enough money to have an arena is probably using their fields and hacking as their main point of exercise and before anyone says it most people have to keep their horses in work because if horses have 2 weeks off they lose most the muscle riders spend their time building up!! also i can guarantee majority of you live in the city and have driven down to the countryside a few times. People who live in the country side normally know everyone in the village and enjoy seeing the horses. i finally want to say the reason people don’t pay road tax for horses is because they don’t produce harmful emissions and all the products people use are normally safe for the environment because their horses are in that environment, i can say all the products used for my animals are safe!!!!!!!!!

    1. I have lived in the countryside all my life, and the locals who ride are on the whole very good but sadly a few are not. I have a horse for hire stable on the single track lane on which I have lived for over 30 years, I have lost count on the number of horses that have returned without its rider or have just turn round and gone home against the riders will, one rider was screening at the horse in what sounded like German. There should be some regulations to stop this sort of thing like a licence for the rider and some sort of test for the horse. An other point I would like to make is there is an large private bridleway network run by the land owners in our area if more people paid to used them more would be made avalible which would be better for the horse and other road users.

  33. I have seen arguments on here talking about how the roads are not just for cars. This is a fair statement, however the other modes of transport don’t have minds of their own.

  34. I live on a single track lane that is part of the national cycle route we also have a rent a horse stable on this lane. I have seen several horse galloping back home without its rider one of these days one of these horses is going to meet a vehicle or bike going the other way, someone is going to be killed.

    As I say this is a singe track lane with passing places it is not uncommon to see horses 3 abreast or 1 rider leading an other alongside how can this be called safe.

    I have been shouted at while cutting the lawn in my garden to stop because I am upsetting the horse, if the horse is so easily spooked why is it on the road. The argument that the horse needs to be on the road to get used to cars is fine but I don’t want the risk of my car being damaged to train another persons horse. That can be done on private roads with there own cars.

    With regards to damaged cars I know of 3 case that car that had pulled over to let the horse past, all 3 had to claim on their own insurence one a classic mg a horse got spooked by a bike and sate on its bonnet the car was written off.

    There is an extensive private bridleway network in our area which you can pay to ride on, if you love your horse why not use them. The more horse that use these pay to use bridleways the more will be made avalible land owners would like the income it would generate. It will be better for the horse and the other road users

    The law with regards horse on the road is well out of date and needs to change. A licence for the rider and some sort of test for the horse would be a good start.

  35. I have just had abuse shouted at me. The road I normally use is closed, so I had to use a narrow winding road instead. Up ahead I could see a rider without a horse, a man leading an agitated horse and three vehicles that had just been allowed to pass the horse and owners. I slowed right down and kept my distance. The rider ( who was walking a bit behind the horse) being led by someone else kept telling me to keep my distance …… But I had been ….. For several minutes. Then she came to my car and started hurling abuse at me for obviously wanting to get past. She didn’t say ” I am so sorry but my horse is playing up. We only live another few minutes away, so please could you bear with us” To which I would have responded “of course”. Instead the woman shortly followed by the man leading the horse just yelled at me!. They made no attempt to explain the situation or even to stand on the wide grass verge and let me slowly pass. I am sure the horse was more stressed out by a car following him than he would have been if they had actually just let me get past. In my mind, they were being really selfish. Expecting me to wait without an explanation. I could have had to follow them at five miles an hour for half an hour for all I knew. I am a caring individual but feel if a horse is physically walking slowly down the middle of the road, and not even attempting to let cars get slowly past, then the horse owners are in the wrong.

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