A West Midlands council sends in bailiffs to warn owners over tethered horses on public land
Horses left tethered on public land in the Sandwell area of the West Midlands are to be removed by bailiffs if they are not found alternative grazing by owners.
The move comes after complaints to the council that members of the public have been injured by the horses left tethered in public parks and at the side of the road.
Some horses are reported to have broken free and left to roam.
There are believed to be around 80 horses kept tethered on council-owned land, mainly in the industrial area of Tipton.
Bailiffs have already put up notices warning owners that once confiscated, they will have to pay to get their horses back, and that those unclaimed will be found new homes.
The owners say there is a “strong tradition” of keeping horses in this way in the area.
Around 20 owners with horses and traps have been protesting about the council’s plans this week outside the council offices.
Councillor Bob Badham said: “We have been trying to work something out with the owners for two years. We’ve had numbers of complaints from the public so we could not let it continue.”
Only one licence has been granted for an owner to keep four horses on an identified area of land.
The RSPCA is supporting the move because it believes tethering can cause unnecessary suffering to the horses.
A spokesperson for the society said: “The horses are often tethered on unsuitable land, sometimes without access to water.”
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