Horse owners call for a restriction on fireworks

  • H&H readers are campaigning for a restriction on fireworks in order to protect horses and wildlife.

    “Fireworks are now occurring at all times of the day and evening for many weeks during the autumn and winter; they are no longer just on or around the 5 November,” said Aimee Hays.

    “We are asking that fireworks used by the general public be restricted and only be permitted on traditional celebration dates only.”

    Fellow H&H reader Diane Ford added: “We feel that the legislation covering the use and sale of fireworks is no longer relevant in protecting the animals and people who constantly suffer due to their misuse, and it requires updating as a matter of urgency.

    Last year a campaign was run, hoping for the ban of private use of fireworks.

    “Unfortunately that petition did not reach the required 100,000 signatures needed for it to be heard at Parliament,” added Ms Ford.

    “There is now a petition which currently stands at more than 67,000 signatures and has a group following on Facebook of nearly 18,000 members.”

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    The Government responded that it was “aware fireworks can cause distress to animals”.

    “Restrictions on the general public’s use of fireworks, and permitted noise levels, already exist and we have no plans to extend them,” continued the response.

    “The regulations created a curfew preventing the use of fireworks between 11.00pm and 7.00am all year round with the exception of 5 November, when the curfew starts at 12 midnight, and New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year and Diwali, when the curfew starts at 1.00 am on the night of celebration.

    Although there is some use of fireworks outside the traditional periods, we believe that the majority of people who use fireworks do so at the appropriate times of year and have a sensible and responsible attitude towards them. There are no plans at the moment to place further limitations on their use.”

    Last November, a 14-year-old thoroughbred mare, Cinders, was found unable to walk at Redwings’ centre in Essex.

    She had been spooked by fireworks and was put down.

    This year the charity urged people holding a display to give local horse owners plenty of warning.

    “Letting horse owners know well in advance where and when fireworks are gong to be let off will enable them to plan and take action if needed,” said Redwings’ Andie Vilela.

    Any incidents of horses being adversely affected by fireworks should be reported to the BHS at www.horseaccidents.org.uk

    To sign the petition visit: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/109702

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