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Thursday, 17 January, 2019

Retraining centres set for new approval system

Horses from the British Thoroughbred Retraining Centre at Cartmel
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A new approval system for centres dedicated to retraining retired racehorses is to be introduced to promote equine welfare and best practice.

The British Horse Society (BHS) will now include retraining centres in its Approved Centre Scheme, an initiative supported by British racing's official horse welfare charity Retraining of Racehorses.

There have been concerns that those setting up retraining centres do not need an official licence, and the BHS has been working with the Lancashire-based British Thoroughbred Retraining Centre (BTRC) on introducing the new system.

BTRC chief executive Gillian Carlisle said: "We believe this is a long overdue development and when retraining centres have BHS approval it will give members of the public more confidence when looking to take on a retired racehorse for equestrian activities."

The BTRC is the first centre to be assessed by the BHS and has been given a 'highly commended' rating.

Carlisle added: "BTRC is delighted to be awarded this new facilities accreditation from the BHS and we hope that all retraining centres, large and small, will join the scheme, not only to assist the public in making a choice before taking on a retired racehorse, but also to facilitate interaction between centres and so promote best practice in the sector."

Those centres which meet the standard for approval from the scheme will have public liability insurance, excellent standards of horse welfare and trained staff as a minimum.

Oonagh Meyer, head of BHS approvals, said: "We're delighted to have been able to develop a category for retraining centres within the BHS approved centre scheme. Helping retired racehorses to find suitable homes is a concern for all of us."

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