Many all horseboxes travelling into and around the capital will be affected by the second phase of the London low emission zone (LEZ).
From 7 July, all lorries over 3.5 tonnes entering the Greater London Authority (GLA) area must comply with the Euro III standard on the amount of pollution, or particulate matter, which they emit.
Lorries manufactured before 1 October 2001 — which includes many horseboxes in the UK — do not comply with the standard and must be converted before they can be driven within the LEZ otherwise drivers must pay a £200 daily charge.
United Riders, an organisation that represents a number of riding organisations in and around London, says complying with the LEZ “will have a catastrophic effect on most riding schools and livery yards within the GLA area”.
“The regulations will include most horseboxes and they will have to be converted at great expense,” said Adrian Liddle of United Riders.
“I have been quoted between £2,000 and £6,000 for the conversion of my 1986 B-reg box and we just cannot afford it.”
He said that from July those riders within the zone would be “to all intents and purposes, landlocked”.
Mr Liddle said the group had written to new London mayor Boris Johnson to ask if he would consider exempting horseboxes from the LEZ or lessening the charge.
“We’ll just have to hope he will do, otherwise it will be a disaster,” he added.
But when H&H asked riding centres in the London area their views (news, 31 January) most said that although the LEZ would mean changes — at least two centres have cancelled events — they were prepared for the regulation.
This news story was first published in Horse & Hound (22 May, ’08)