Although at first glance the financial rewards and standard hours of office work seem an attractive option, when the high costs of living are deducted and commuting time is considered, work as a groom appears more lucrative that its traditional stereotype might suggest.

The riding school groom

  • Weekly take-home pay: £120
  • Working hours: 42.5hr, five-day week, plus one late night check of 45mins
  • Accommodation: provided in shared four-bedroom house (worth approx £60 per week)
  • Utility bills: included (worth approx£10 per week)
  • Phone: landline, incoming calls only
  • Travel: no travelling involved
  • Other perks: free grass livery (worth £30 per week), two lessons a week with visiting instructor (worth £60 per week), free entry to shows at yard, training for BHS exams

Residual value: Approx £280 per week, plus entry fees and training

The competition groom

  • Weekly take-home pay: £200
  • Working hours: 48hr, six-day week (plus yard checks)
  • Accommodation: provided in shared house (worth approx £60 per week)
  • Utility bills: included (worth approx £10 per week)
  • Phone: work mobile, personal calls extra
  • Travel: no travel to work. Extra pay when driving lorry to competitions
  • Other perks: livery for own horse available for small deduction from salary. Lots of opportunity to travel.

Residual value: approx £270 per week, not including travel, livery or driving pay

The racing lass

  • Weekly take-home pay: £205
  • Working hours: 42hr, 5.5-day week plus every third weekend
  • Accommodation: provided in shared two-bed house (worth approx £70 per week)
  • Utility bills: not included (deduct approx £10 per week)
  • Phone: not included
  • Travel: no travel to work. Petrol money when driving to race meetings
  • Other perks: various bursaries available providing opportunities to travel, ride and train

Residual value: approx £265 per week, not including bursaries, travel, training and riding

The office worker

  • Weekly take-home pay: £261 (£18,000 per annum)
  • Working hours: 40hr, five day week (plus unpaid overtime)
  • Accommodation: costs £90 per week in shared house of four
  • Utility bills: not included (deduct approx £10 per week)
  • Phone: share of landline rental, not including calls (deduct approx 65p per week), mobile phone rental, not including calls (deduct approx £3.75 per week)
  • Travel: costs £25 per week commuting to work, 2hr round trip
  • Cost to keep horse: DIY livery £60 per week

Residual value: £71.60

Find out more about the individuals who enjoy the jobs detailed above in the 30 January issue of Horse & Hound. To purchase a back copy of this issue contact (tel: 020 8532 3628). Click here to subscribe and enjoy Horse & Hound delivered to your door every week.