Harlow Council targets travellers’ ponies with passports scheme

  • Thirty-four more travellers’ ponies have passports and microchips after a day-long welfare event in Harlow on 6 July.

    The RSPCA, World Horse Welfare, Redwings, the Ada Cole Rescue Centre and the British Horse Society, joined forces with Harlow Council and veterinary drugs company Merial to target travellers’ horses in the Essex town.

    Owners of horses tethered on common land at Latton Common, Harlow Common and Collins Meadow were invited to get their animals passported, wormed and microchipped and were advised how to ensure they complied with the Animal Welfare Act.

    RSPCA inspector Stephen Reeves said: “The way the majority of owners tether and look after their horses here is acceptable.”

    But of the 36 horses and ponies found in Harlow, only two had passports and one was chipped.

    Claire Gordon, World Horse Welfare field officer for the area, said travellers’ ponies sometimes “slipped through the net”.

    Harlow Council insists all horses on council land are chipped or wear a tag so owners can be identified. It hopes to repeat the scheme.

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