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The British Grooms Association (BGA) needs more members and is appealing to the horse industry for support during these difficult financial times.

Although BGA executive director Lucy Katan insists the BGA is “financially healthy”, the organisation is worse off than in previous years due to the recession and sponsorship has halved in recent times.

The BGA’s income stream includes the Equine Employers’ Handbook (£37.50), which has sold 200 copies since its launch earlier this year.

It also relies on membership funds (£17.50 per member) and selling adverts in its British Grooms magazine.

BGA chairman John Smales told H&H: “We’re not in a crisis, but the BGA needs to sell a great number of employers’ handbooks in order to sustain running.

“We do very much need the support of the horse industry as a whole — as the BGA is of benefit to everyone.”

The organisation has 750 members, but needs more. It currently gets no funding from the horse industry.

Chief executive of the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) Andrew Finding told H&H he was not keen on discussing what his organisation “may or may not do” to fund the BGA.

But he added: “The BEF is very supportive of the BGA but it is important for all organisations to stand on their own two feet.”

This article was first published in Horse & Hound (22 April, ’10)