The British Horse Society (BHS) has teamed up with British Cycling (BC) and Cycling Time Trials (CTT) to try to cut clashes between riders and cyclists on the roads.
The BHS aims to increase understanding between groups by publishing guidance on all three bodies’ websites and in a new BHS leaflet.
Sheila Hardy of the BHS, who is also chairman of CTT, said: “It can be very frightening [for a horse] to be confronted by a long string of cyclists who are racing. We have also had complaints from riders about the behaviour of lone cyclists on the roads.”
The guidance note will be posted on the websites by the end of the month.
There will also be links from the cycling websites to the BHS list of approved yards and liveries, so cyclists can check if riding centres are based in the areas where they plan to ride.
And equestrians are urged to click through from the BHS site to BC’s list of clubs, which shows all cycling events by region.
The CTT’s Keith Lawton said: “We ran a full-page article in our yearbook explaining how to approach and overtake horse riders and will do so again next year.
“We all share the roads so we need to civil to each other.”
Rider Jess Snape-Burns, from Edale, Derbys, said: “A friend was riding her horse when a cyclist overtook them at speed through a fairly narrow gap – and changed gears while doing so.
“The horse bolted and my friend hurt her leg badly. The cyclist was apologetic, and said ‘I didn’t know it would frighten him’.”
This news story was first published in Horse & Hound (22 September, 2011)