The Pony Club has suspended all mounted activities, training courses and competitions until the end of April.

The decision whether to hold dismounted rallies rests with the individual branch, providing it can follow the proper disinfecting procedures. Members who live in infected areas are not being encouraged to attend.

The newly appointed Pony Club chairman Lt Col Gordon Wesley said: “It is a very worrying time for all our farmer friends and so many others in ancillary occupations. We must avoid any possibility of inadvertently spreading the infection.”