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Riding establishment licence

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To run a riding establishment (where horses or ponies are hired out for riding or used for riding instruction) in England, Scotland or Wales, you need a licence from the local authority.

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must be over 18 years of age. In England and Wales they must have not been disqualified:

Applicants must pay any required fee and comply with any conditions attached to a licence.

Regulation summary

Application evaluation process

Once your application is received, a licensing officer will contact you to make arrangements to carry out an inspection of your premises. The officer may be accompanied by an approved vet.

Before deciding an application the local authority must consider a report from a veterinary surgeon or practitioner detailing whether the premises are suitable for a riding establishment and detailing the conditions of the premises and any horses.

The local authority will also take into account whether the applicant is suitable and qualified to hold a licence. They must also be satisfied of the following:


In addition to any other conditions a riding establishment licence must be subject to the following conditions:

Will tacit consent apply?

No. Your licence will only be issued to you when all the necessary inspections/checks have been carried out and the premises meets the required standards.

The licence may also list additional site specific conditions.

Target completion

You can expect to be contacted by Animal Health Licensing within 14 days of receipt of your application.  We would normally expect to let you know our decision on your application within 6 weeks of receipt.

Apply online

Contact details

Animal Health Licensing
Cheshire West and Chester Council
The Forum
Chester
CH1 2HS

Tel: 01244 976767
Fax: 01244 973773
Email: BusinessAdvice@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk

Failed application redress

Please contact Cheshire West and Chester Council in the first instance.

An applicant whose application is refused can appeal to the local magistrates' court. In Scotland an applicant whose application is refused can appeal to the local sheriff.

Licence holder redress

Please contact Cheshire West and Chester Council in the first instance.

A licence holder who wishes to appeal against a condition can appeal to a local magistrates' court. In Scotland licence holder who wishes to appeal against a condition can appeal to the local sheriff.

Consumer complaint

We would always advise that in the event of a complaint the first contact is made with the trader by you - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, if you are located in the UK, Citizens Advice Consumer Service will give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Trade associations