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New equine body targets Government.

SUPPORT from the BHB has clinched the establishment of a new body, the British Horse Industry Confederation, whose aim is to speak with one voice for the equine industry, writes Howard Wright.

Launched yesterday, the BHIC is chaired by British Horse Society chairman Michael Clayton, and comprises representatives of the British Equestrian Federation, BHB, and Thoroughbred Breeders' Association.

Its chief target is the Government, and organisers regard the support of Lord Donoughue, the House of Lords spokesman for the Ministry of Agriculture, as significant for its success.

Donoughue, a prime mover in setting up the BHIC, said yesterday: "It has long struck me that the horse industry is a great one but a fractured one.

"It's the only major industry, for instance, which doesn't have a sponsoring department in Whitehall. Even the smallest widget manufacturer can call on the DTI to help develop his product.

"If this situation is to change, and the Government is to take the industry seriously, the various elements have to come together, and the Confederation will provide that opportunity. I'm very encouraged by the constructive discussion that has already taken place."

The terms of reference of the Confederation are:

nTo constitute a small, focused forum for the discussion of, and the making of, representations to Government with a single voice, on matters of mutual interest and concern to all sectors of the horse industry.

nTo provide for Government departments a recognised point of contact for matters affecting the horse industry.

nTo encourage Government to establish responsibility for protecting, developing and promoting the horse industry.

Tristram Ricketts, who, as chief executive represents the BHB on the BHIC, stressed that the new body will complement, not replace, existing channels of communication between organisations and Government.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Author:Wright, Howard
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Mar 4, 1999
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