Help keep bridleways open with BHS Ride Out UK Week

  • Riders are being encouraged to explore off-road hacking routes as part of the British Horse Society’s (BHS) Ride Out UK Week.

    Formerly known as Access Week, the event runs from 28 May until 5 June, and riders are being encouraged to “spread the word” about the importance of having safe off-road areas.

    “We are encouraging riders of all ages and abilities to go out and explore their local routes on horseback,” said the BHS’ director of access, Mark Weston.

    The BHS is partnering with retailer Bridleway Equestrian and Hoof, the British Equestrian Federation’s participation programme.

    Louise Ainge, Bridleway Equestrian’s marketing manager, said: “We will be handing out maps in stores and putting these on our website so riders can enjoy local routes and participate in the fundraising events, which we hope will help the BHS on its ambitious campaign to keep paths open.”

    Money raised will go to the BHS paths for communities fund, which helps create, repair and restore bridleways, byways and other routes for riders and carriage drivers.

    A BHS spokesman added that the week is also a reminder for riders in England that all routes need to be recorded on the government’s “definitive map” by 1 January 2026 or will be lost.

    “The BHS has a team of HQ staff, volunteers and equestrian access groups who are dedicated to defending, extending and promoting the off-road network,” said a spokesman. “They will be working hard throughout Ride Out UK Week and beyond to ensure that all routes are protected for future generations to come.”

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    Events include the Stathearn Riders and Rural Access Group’s sponsored ride in Royal Deeside, Scotland, on 29 May; Wellow Equestrian’s farm ride, Notts, on 5 June, which includes a mile-long uphill gallops; and Kirklees Bridleway Group’s pleasure ride in Farnley Tyas Estate, Yorks, on 5 June.

    A list of events and other activities can be found at www.bhs.org.uk/access-and-bridleways/ride-out-uk-week

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