Throughout May, the British Horse Society is encouraging riders to saddle up and explore the scenic route!
The BHS’s new initiative, Ride Out UK Month, has been created to celebrate the joys of exploring the countryside on horseback, while also promoting their hard work in protecting and extending safe off-road routes for riders and carriage drivers.
Events will be held throughout May, and will be organised by the BHS, its county committees, affiliated equestrian access groups and approved centres, meaning that no matter where you are, there’ll be plenty for you to get involved with. Not only is Ride Out UK Month a fantastic opportunity to get outside and explore the countryside, it’s also a great way to raise vital funds for the BHS Paths for Communities fund, which helps to create and expand off-road routes for horses. The bridleway and byway network has been diminishing in England and Wales, and any pre-1949 routes not registered by 2026 will be removed from the maps, which means that the BHS needs you to get involved, by recording the routes that you ride and ensuring they’ll stay open for future generations to enjoy. Ride Out UK Month offers you all the support and information you need to record your routes and take a stand against bridleway closures.
Last year’s initiative raised more than £8200, and this year the BHS expects to exceed this amount. Since the launch of the Paths for Communities fund in 2015, the BHS has received more than 32 applications from riders hoping to utilise the fund in their area. In total, nearly £20,000 has been used to fund related projects, which has resulted in the introduction of five new off-road routes in the UK.
This year’s BHS Ride Out UK Month is supported by Equisafety, who specialise in sophisticated reflective sportswear. It’s important to be safe and visible when you’re riding – why not be stylish, too?
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The BHS has teamed up with the National Trust to offer five pleasure rides on National Trust sites, giving you the amazing opportunity of saddling up and exploring some of the country’s most beautiful estates on horseback. These rides are suitable for all ages and abilities, and unmounted supporters are welcome to come along, too. Visit www.bhs.org.uk for more details on these and other exciting events throughout May.
14 MAY – Killerton Estate, Devon. Adults £20 in advance; £25 on the day;
Children/lead rein prices vary
21 MAY – Dolaucothi Gold Mines, Carmarthenshire. £10 per rider
25 MAY – Mount Stewart, Co. Down. £15 per rider; 40 rider limit, BHS Gold members only
14 MAY – Culzean Castle, Ayrshire. £15 per rider
20 MAY – Brodie Castle, Forres. £20 per rider; 10km carriage drive available