The campaign was launched in May to fight transport regulations for people who drive HGVs as part of their hobby.
The Vehicle Operator Services Agency (VOSA) has effectively banned anyone with a full-time job from driving their HGV [over 7.5tonne] lorry at weekends by strictly interpreting a European law.
Peter Waghorn, chairman of the National Vintage Tractor and Engine Club, is urging his members to sign up.
“This ridiculous legislation will affect our hobby and pastime,” he said. “Vintage tractors are transported by HGV by their owners. We would look for joint support in removing this crazy regulation.”
Meanwhile, MPs who are raising the matter with the Department of Transport (DoT) have received a standard response stating: “Horse trials can span a Saturday and Sunday, [but] these are usually planned in advance. So though it might cause inconvenience, it should be possible for those in full-time employment to schedule a reduced weekly rest period of 24 hours immediately before the event.”
Wally French, father of event rider Piggy, said the response “demonstrates how out of touch government departments are”.
Replying to the DoT, he wrote: “This is the real world. The prospect of taking a day off to drive our horses to an event in an HGV at weekends is not only impractical but uneconomical.”
David Davies MP for Monmouth said the DoT response is “full of the usual government jargon” and does little to address concerns.
He added: “Rest assured my Conservative colleagues and I will continue to hold the government to account and press for an exemption or change in the law.”
This article was first published in Horse & Hound (3 September, ’09)