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what's happening under the Showing Council?

Charter for the Horse


25th March 2024

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Charter for the Horse: a unified approach to safeguarding our equines and equids.

British Equestrian (BEF), our 19 member bodies and associated industry leaders have united to commit to endorse the highest standards of equine welfare, wellbeing and ethics under a new ‘Charter for the Horse’.

The Charter for the Horse has been developed with BEF stakeholder groups to be adopted across the equestrian industry by all who have a connection to horses and equids. Under the six headings of empathy, care, respect, consideration, ethics and learning, the Charter outlines actions we must observe to guarantee the individual mental, physical and behavioural needs of our horses are met more

The Showing Council - Code of Conduct, Standards and Values for Producers


23rd January 2024

The Showing Council has recently published a Code of Conduct for Professional and Amateur Show Producers. This is a valuable starting point in setting out minimum standards for all producers of show horses and ponies. Not only will this help provide consistency of required standards for producers but also will provide help and guidance for those who have, or are thinking about having a horse or pony produced for the show ring. Similarly, for parents who are contemplating sending their children and ponies to be trained this is particularly important given this is one of a very few unregulated industries working with children.


Elizabeth Inman, recently appointed chair of The Showing Council said, “this is a significant first step in ensuring we set out some clear standards, guidance and expectations not only for those already within our sport but as importantly for all newcomers. I am very grateful to my predecessors; David Ingle who initiated this process and Jane Nixon for taking it forward . Particular thanks also go to Julie Templeton for producing its content and Paul Cook for his help and support.

Julie Templeton, a Director of The Showing Council and leading professional producer and trainer, said, “I am grateful to the Showing Council for their support in producing this important document. For a long time I have been concerned that the sport I love lacked a clear set of standards to which we operate and this shortfall had the potential to place our sport at risk. This provides a starting point to move to a more regulated industry, giving everyone confidence and building on the excellent work already undertaken by many of my peers in the production of show horses and ponies and the training of riders.”

For further information please contact:

BEF Member Body Email Update


22nd November 2023

Good Employers Week 2023:

The Equestrian Employers Association together with British Grooms Association will be launching the annual Good Employment Week (GEW) on Monday 20th November. GEW will be a week of positive news, educational pieces, and engagement that focus on the benefits of, and how to adhere to good employment. Each day will have its own theme all with the aim of raising the importance of employing legally, fairly, and kindly to improve the retention of our current workforce and to help make our industry a more attractive place to work. This year the campaign is calling for ‘hands up’ to those who do not have contracts. ‘Give Your Staff a Pizza Day’ takes place on Friday 24 November. The more of us who can promote the importance of good employment practices in our industry and celebrate the amazing hard-working teams out there, the more powerful the message. Find out more.


Anti Bullying Week:

In conjunction with #AntiBullyingWeek, Riders Minds have revealed that 76% of equestrians have been bullied, with a further 85% saying that they have witnessed bullying within the industry. Read the full story: Riders Minds Bullying



National Lottery Awards for All National Lottery Awards for All, is changing – supporting their ambition to turbocharge funding for grassroots community projects across the UK. The fundamental changes are that they have doubled the amount organisations can apply for and how long they’ll fund the project. Find out more. The Wolfson Foundation The main grants programme is open to organisations who are a registered charity, exempt or excepted charity, local authority or school. These grants are for capital initiatives, i.e. buildings (new build or refurbishment) and purchasing equipment. They fund a broad range of fields including education, mental health & disability. Deadline 05/01/2024.


Safeguarding Adults Week:

Safeguarding Adults Week 2023 takes place 20 –24 November 2023. During Safeguarding Adults Week 2023, Ann Craft Trust are focusing on how you can prioritise the welfare and wellbeing of yourself and others.


Dates For Your Diary:


  • 17 Nov - Cheltenham Countryside Race Day

  • 19 Nov - International Men’s Day

  • 20 - 24 Nov - Good Employment Week (Equestrian Employer’s Association)

  • 25 Nov - White Ribbon Day

  • 20 - 26 Nov - Safeguarding Adults Week

The Showing Council - Meeting


22nd October 2023

At a recent meeting of The Showing Council, the following points were discussed by the Member Bodies: 

Flu Vaccinations - Any horse starting a new course of flu vaccinations from 01 January 2024 will need their second dose 21 – 60 days after the first, and their first booster 120 – 180 days after that. The maximum time for a booster following this is 12 months. FEI horses and all horses staying/competing on a racecourse outside of race days require horses to have had their booster within 6 months and 21 days of a previous vaccine and not within 7 days of arriving at the event.

Solid metal straight bar curbs (with leather sleeve) - The Showing Council together with the Worshipful Company of Saddlers strongly recommend these bit accessories should not be used or permitted for Showing.

Social Media - The Showing Council can help to develop guidelines for Member Bodies Social Media Policies if needed.  A small group of representatives are invited to join a 'think tank' to discuss and advise on this important subject. 

British Horse Council – New Borders Rules Survey


21st June 2023

New rules around the importation of horses from the EU are due to come into force in October 2024.  The BHC would like to hear your views to make sure that they balance biosecurity, welfare, trade, and practicalities.  The new rules will mean changes in the procedures for crossing borders with live animals, including horses, from the EU to GB.  For many consignments, this will mean stops and checks at Border Control Posts, as well as fees.


The survey will take around 10 mins to complete, with the results being used to help Government develop suitable processes for the implementation of borders processes.


To take the survey, please click the link: Borders Rules Survey (Closes 30th June)

New Head of Performance Support announced for British Equestrian


14th May 2023

British Equestrian (BEF) and the UK Sports Institute (UKSI) are delighted to confirm the appointment of Amanda Evans as Head of Performance Support for the Equestrian World Class Programme (WCP), funded by the National Lottery.

The Head of Performance Support (HoPS) role focuses on working with our performance teams to maximise the impact of science, medicine and technology more

The Showing Council Summer Conference  2023


9th May 2023

The Showing Council is please to announce its Summer Conference will take place at the National Showjumping Training Centre, Hothorpe, Leics LE17 6QX on Thursday 29th June 2023.

With a number of guest speakers, and an opportunity to tour the facilities of the centre with Iain Graham, British Showjumping CEO.

For a copy of the agenda, please click here

To book your tickets, please click here; Members of Member Bodies - Free

                                                                    Guests or Non-Members - £5.00

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FEI Equine Ethics and Wellbeing Commission Survey


9th May 2023

Please find below the link to the FEI Equine Ethics and Wellbeing Commission survey, which we have been asked to circulate on behalf of the FEI:


British Equestrian takes major step towards a fully representative future


6th April 2023

British Equestrian (BEF) has today released a response to the comprehensive #HorsesForAll report, a research study into the lived experiences of underrepresented communities in equestrian activity. Undertaken by AKD Solutions on the federation’s behalf, the report is the result of four months of research across interviews, forums, experience days and a nationwide survey with over 800 respondents which gave a huge amount of data and insight. The resulting 89-page document highlighted nine key themes and set out 11 recommendations for BEF to consider more

Have your say: environmental sustainability in the equestrian industry


23rd March 2023

Ground-breaking survey now live....

British Equestrian (BEF) is delighted to today release its industry wide survey around environmental sustainability in order to help us shape a strategy to address the risks, challenges and opportunities to support the wider equine community on this fundamental social impact topic.

Prepared by leading environment consultancy White Griffin, more

Do you have the recommended insurance to show your horse?


18th February 2023

Can you confidently say you’d have the correct insurance in place to cover you if your horse were to kick and injure someone, or something, at a show, out schooling, or hacking? If the answer is no or you're not sure, this webinar is for you.

In recent years, and even more so in 2023, equestrian shows of all shapes and sizes are stipulating that Showing exhibitors and competitors have Public Liability insurance in place before entering.

To tackle this, The Showing Council has brought together The British Horse Society and SEIB Insurance Brokers, to guide us though exactly what type of insurance you should have in place to protect you.

Make sure you are ready for the 2023 season by signing up to this free event by completing the form below, you’ll then be emailed a Microsoft Teams link to join the webinar:


The Showing Council Horse Insurance Webinar

  • Date: Wednesday 1st March 2023

  • Time: 7pm – 8pm

Please note the webinar will be recorded. Please submit any questions you would like answered, in advance of the webinar, to with a subject header of Showing Insurance Q&A.

British Equestrian launches bursary to grow and support coaching workforce


13th February 2023

British Equestrian is pleased to launch its new coach bursary scheme, designed to help people who would like to take the first step in their coaching career or further develop their existing coaching skills, but who might be held back by the cost of gaining qualifications.

Funded by Sport England, the bursary scheme is intended to support staff and volunteers at riding centres to gain qualifications, thereby helping to grow the opportunities more

Equine Influenza (EI) Vaccines Update


28th November 2022

Dear All,


We are delighted to confirm that the supply of equine influenza (EI) vaccines within the UK has now returned to normal and suitable products are available from all three manufacturers i.e., Boehringer Ingelheim, MSD and Zoetis. BEF’s member bodies are to be commended for responding rapidly and responsibly to the EI vaccine shortage as it emerged in late August more

New Equine Ethics and Wellbeing Commission presents first report to FEI members


22nd November 2022

The Equine Ethics and Wellbeing Commission (EEWB) for the FEI delivered its first report to FEI delegates at the FEI General Assembly (GA) in Cape Town (12 November).

The independent EEWB was founded in June 2022 to address equine welfare issues of public and equestrian concern to ensure the welfare of the horse is paramount - and so strengthen horse sport’s ‘social licence’ to operate. The Commission, which meets monthly, more

British Equestrian puts equine health first with dedicated awareness week


15th November 2022

As part of our commitment to promote the highest standards in welfare, British Equestrian is excited to launch a new initiative in Equine Health Week. Running from 28 November to 4 December 2022, the week will feature educational content across our social media channels from leading veterinary surgeons, many of which sit on British Equestrian’s Equine Infectious Diseases Advisory Group (EIDAG). The week is aimed at everyone who interacts more

Equine Influenza Vaccine Update


7th November 2022

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Dear All


I just wanted to provide a quick update on the EI vaccine shortage and news of several confirmed cases of EI around the country.


The news from BEVA is Boehringer Ingelheim is getting supplies into the country and at present many wholesalers have product - it’s now a case of distributing out to practices all over more

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National Mourning Guidelines - Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II's funeral date confirmed


12th September 2022

Dear All


Further to my email on Friday, the Royal Household has confirmed that HM Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral will take place on Monday 19th September.  This date has been declared as a Bank Holiday and as such, I can advise that the BEF offices will be closed on this day to enable all those who wish to, to be able to mark the occasion.


The official guidance for this period of National Mourning outlined that, whilst organisations are not obligated to cancel or postpone events on the day of the funeral, they may wish to consider it, or adjust the timing of events so they do not clash with the funeral service (11.00am) and more

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Book of Condolence


10th September 2022

Dear All,

Following the incredibly sad news of the Queen’s passing, British Equestrian will be leading on an equine industry condolence book. If staff would like to sign it, the main book can be found in the reception area of the BHS building at Equestrian House, Abbey Park, Stareton.  For those that cannot make it to our office, and would still like to contribute to the book, we are asking member bodies to purchase their own loose-leaf pages from Shaw’s Funeral Products ( each pack size 20 pages of 16 lines). Once completed, they can be sent back to the BEF for my attention, and they will be bound within the main book.  In the event a member body is struggling to get hold of them I do have 8 packs on standby more

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Advice for the National Mourning Period


10th September 2022

Dear All


I participated in a call with DCMS this morning.  For your information, we have received via UKS the following information:


Further to my email of yesterday evening, please find the National Mourning Guidance here. You may find it helpful to pay particular attention to the section on page 3 regarding Major Events, Entertainment and Sports.


We also recognise that the guidance provides some discretion to sports and event organisers. We are exploring whether there more 

In memory of Her Majesty The Queen


8th September 2022

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Her Majesty the Queen - 21st April 1926 - 8th September 2022

On behalf of the showing community, The Showing Council offers our heartfelt condolences to HRH The Prince of Wales and all members of the Royal Family at this incredibly sad time.

Paying tribute to Her Majesty The Queen, Dr Jane Nixon, Chair of the Showing Council, said: “I would like to extend our condolences to His Royal Highness Prince Charles, the Royal Family and all those affected by the death of Her Majesty The Queen.

“Her Majesty’s unwavering dedication and remarkable stoicism are a leading example to us all. She was such a wonderful supporter of equestrianism throughout her life, a true champion of the horse and showing, and our community will feel her loss most deeply indeed.”

It is understood that all competitions will be cancelled on the day of Her Majesty’s funeral but may continue on other dates.

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UPDATE: Equine Influenza Vaccine Shortage


7th September 2022

Further to the update issued jointly with the British Equestrian Veterinary Association (BEVA) and the  British Horseracing Authority (BHA) on 17 August, it has been confirmed there are distribution problems with equine influenza doses of Boehringer Ingelheim’s Proteq product. This is a Europe-wide issue, but the impact of a shortage of doses.........

Read full report here

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Social Licence to Operate: What Can Equestrian Sports Learn from Other Industries?


17th August 2022

For the latest paper on Social Licence to Operate (SLO) from MDPI, please click the link below:

Social Licence to Operate

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British Equestrian announces definite entries for FEI Para Dressage World Championship


20th July 2022

British Equestrian and the British Dressage para selectors can today confirm the four horse and rider combinations, plus reserves, that will form their list of definite entries ahead of the FEI Para Dressage World Championship, set to take place in Herning, Denmark, from 6–14 August this year.


Selected entries, listed by grade then in alphabetical order by athlete surname:  read more......


Riders Minds Launches Head First Campaign


11th May 2022

Leading equestrian mental health charity Riders Minds has launched their Head First campaign to raise awareness of the effects of concussion on mental health.

The campaign has been created following the concerning results of a study by Charles Owen which revealed that 6 in 10 riders suffer from depression after a concussion. The survey also found read more......

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Informal Guidance to National Governing Bodies on the Participation of Russian and Belarussian sportspeople in a neutral capacity


28th March 2022

Following the illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the UK Government has taken a number of actions against Russia and Belarus in relation to sport. With regard to the participation of individuals in sporting events, the Government’s aim is to minimise the ability of Russian and Belarussian read more......

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Riders must walk the talk to ensure our sport survives


25th March 2022

Following the last Showing Council's webinar, Horse & Hound talks to Jane Nixon:  read more......

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British Equestrians for Ukraine: week one update


22nd March 2022

Just over a week after launching, the team behind British Equestrians for Ukraine can report a successful start thanks to an overwhelming response from the equine community to help those displaced by the Russian invasion. The public fund set up via World Horse Welfare is currently running at over  read more......

Showing Council Webinars


18th March 2022

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Thank you to all who have attended the Showing Council’s Winter Webinar series, and in particular, the final presentation by Dr Jane Nixon MRCVS on Thursday evening:  "Will we be riding in 20 years’ time?"

We were delighted there were 451 registrants for this thought provoking talk on Social Licence to Operate with Q&A's. Sadly we ran out of time for all the questions, but the panel of Kezia Allen, Elizabeth Beckerlegge, Sally Iggulden, Roly Owers and Jane Nixon, have kindly agreed to respond to the unanswered ones.

We took a poll before the presentation and again afterwards, the results were interesting.  It asked:  Will horse riding be acceptable in 20 years’ time?

  • Pre-presentation                               No: 17.58%           Yes: 82.42%

  • Post-presentation                             No: 21.31%           Yes: 78.69%

It was generally agreed that we all have much work to do and there will be difficult conversations along the way! 

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A new Performance Director for British Equestrian


9th March 2022

British Equestrian is delighted to announce that Helen Nicholls will join as Performance Director in early May to provide leadership of our elite talent World Class Programmes, funded by UK Sport and the National Lottery, and senior championship teams in the disciplines of dressage, eventing, jumping  read more......


Letter from Dept. of Digital, Culture, Media & Sport


4th March 2022

For a copy of the letter sent from Department of Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, please read more......


Riders Minds Awarded Charitable Status


20th February 2022

Equestrian mental health and well-being resource Riders Minds are thrilled to have been awarded charitable status, marking a big milestone for the organisation.

Formerly set up as a Community Interest Company, the Charity Commission for England  read more......

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Update on UK Equine Influenza (EI) activity


14th December 2021

For an update on UK Equine Influenza (EI) activity, please click the link below:

UK Equine Influenza (EI) activity

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Government’s COVID Plan B brought in for England


13th December 2021

The government announced on Wednesday that England will move to ‘Plan B’ in response to the risks of the Omicron COVID variant.

For those living in England, this means:  read more.......​

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