Keith Warth, author of “Stables and other Equestrian Buildings”, believes buildings should be constructed around the horse.
“Cost is obviously a priority, but make sure that you’re not compromising on safety or your horse’s comfort.”
Keith advises buyers to visit as many yards as possible to gain an idea of good and bad points of certain constructions.
“Try and look at stables which have been in use for at least five years, as this will give you some idea of wear andtear,” says Keith.
“Ideally, the joins shouldn¨t have gaps and the overall look should be substantial.”
The importance of sympathetic design
“Ideally, you want cross ventilation so that fresh air is available at all times,” says Keith.
“The floor should slope, either forward or back, to encourage drainage. Poor drainage could result in a build up of ammonia which is a serious threat to the horse’s respiratory system.
“High ceilings are important as they reduce the level of moisture in the air.
“Bear in mind that horses love to be within sight of each other. However, if you are going to install bars between stables, don’t have them next to mangers as horses don’t like being disturbed while theyre eating.”
Design for comfort
The stable and its roof should be designed to keep the temperature below 15øC (60øF). Horses tolerate cold, but high temperatures can cause them distress.
Design features for consideration:
Choosing a site
Buildings require proper foundations and planning permission may well be requires from your local authority.
The site will usually have to be surveyed and you may need to have plans drawn up by anarchitect.
When choosing a site, consider the following:
Most farm buildings can be converted into looseboxes or stalls, provided that the building is sound, the roof is of sufficient height, and proper ventilation can be installed.
It as also possible to convert large buildings into an American-style barn, where the building will contain two rows of loose boxes facing each other across a passageway.