Driving pony and trap

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mickthemaverick
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Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

I was astounded yesterday when out collecting supplies to come across a pony and trap driving down a B road with two very young, 7-10, year old boys aboard. Does anyone know the actual law regarding this as I cannot accept that that is legal and my searching has not yielded a definitive answer? :?:

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NewcastleFalcon
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Well not a quote from "man down the pub" but one from "Yorkshire lass" on the Horse and Hound forum....
Horses are on the road by ancient right, cars etc are on the road by licence.

It is a bit like the "steam gives way to sail" rule for boats. In the same way that you wouldn't go windsurfing in a shipping lane... you don't assume that motorised trafic will respect horses.

Driven horses have preference over ridden horses because they are less manouverable.
Of course some legislation may be more precise than "Yorkshire Lass".

Regards Neil

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NewcastleFalcon
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Not much in the Highway code

https://www.highwaycodeuk.co.uk/rules-a ... icles.html

Regards Neil

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

Indeed, there is not much on .gov.uk either. It almost seems like nobody is prepared to commit the rules to paper. All I could find was relating to use of horse driven vehicles for hire or reward. Nothing about age limits at all!

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NewcastleFalcon
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

mickthemaverick wrote:
11 Nov 2020, 10:50
Indeed, there is not much on .gov.uk either. It almost seems like nobody is prepared to commit the rules to paper. All I could find was relating to use of horse driven vehicles for hire or reward. Nothing about age limits at all!
That would be this Code of Practice
https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... n-vehicles

But in the first paragraph it negates any requirement to follow it, or for it to be enforcable other than as a condition of a licence to operate a passsenger carrying service.

"The assessment is not a compulsory requirement for those wishing to drive horses but may be required if an operator wants to receive a local authority licence to operate a passenger carrying service.

Regards Neil

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bobins
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by bobins »

It probably comes down to being a 'competent person' when driving a horse and trap on the roads, and it's ultimately up to the courts to define whether they are or aren't competent.

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

I tend to agree with that bobins but I find it hard to believe that we could accept children under 10 as responsible handlers in traffic. What happens if the horse bolts or something? :?

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bobins
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by bobins »

If a horse bolts, it matters not if the 'driver' is 10 or 110 - the horse is out of control for the duration of the 'bolt'. All you can do is hope the 'driver' is insured and wait for the dust to settle.

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

I was thinking more about the safety of the youngster in that situation! :(

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old'uns
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by old'uns »

From my sightings of said transport I don't think the 'responsible' person in control has any respect for laws....

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bobins
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by bobins »

Does a person in charge of a horse on the road even have to have knowledge of the Highway Code (from a legal perspective) ? I ask because I genuinely don't know.

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

old'uns wrote:
11 Nov 2020, 12:31
From my sightings of said transport I don't think the 'responsible' person in control has any respect for laws....
I take your point there old'uns, but just because there are those who will ignore the laws doesn't mean to say that there isn't a law to ignore!! I just want to know what it is?

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

Let me approach this from another angle....Would you allow your <10 year old child to drive a pony and trap in today's traffic conditions? :?:

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bobins
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by bobins »

That would depend on the road, the child, the horse, the weather, how far they were going, and whether they were supervised...... but in most cases, I probably wouldn't.

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Driving pony and trap

Post by mickthemaverick »

The only official documentation I can find relating to this issue has no mention of age at all. See:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... assessment