Agri Vehicles Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Planning for mainly equestrian project  (Read 1529 times)


  • Joined Aug 2016
Planning for mainly equestrian project
« on: August 29, 2016, 12:18:01 am »
Hi everyone, my family rented and then inherited a small house in need of renovation with 5 acres of land in Gloucestershire. My children grew up there and we kept chickens and sheep and ponies. Now they are grown up and I have only one pony though I let a friend keep her 3 with me. We have had ponies and horses on the land for 15 years, I registered as a smallholding about 10 years ago and my daughter who is training to be a vet wants to take over the land with her boyfriend and run a business caring and rehabilitating horses and ponies that have previously been shod and gone lame, with the use of a gravel track, daily exercise, a diet rich in minerals and a minimum of rich grass but ample dried forage. It is a tried and tested method. The house is semi-renovated and we have no savings so we hope to split off the land and sell the house and apply for planning permission for my daughter to build a house on the 5 acres  in order to run the business. Do we have any hope of success? We are on the outskirts of a very 'nice' and popular village. At present we have a static on the land as a spare bedroom. Any advice gratefully received!


  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2016, 08:19:22 am »
Talk to planning. See if the community have a parish or neighbourhood plan to guage support from the village. My thoughts are as you have a house already where is your need? What other buildings do you need? How viable is the business potential? Do you mean your daughter is offering a service or taking in and rehoming unwanted horses with a specific problem?


  • Joined Dec 2015
  • North coast of Scotland
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2016, 12:12:32 pm »
Something like Nic Barker at Rockley Farm offers?  Fantastic idea and lots of demand if she can do it successfully.

I think the key will probably be explaining to the planning department that it's not a normal livery yard and there won't be as much coming and going. 


  • Joined Aug 2016
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2016, 07:56:46 pm »
Thank you! We are going to have a pre planning visit (at a cost of £200...grrr...) to gauge reaction and the need is myself and husband have little income and no work pensions and cannot afford to keep place up so will be selling or renting out the house and splitting it from the 5 acres. daughter and boyfriend will take over if they can live first in mobile or log cabin while getting planning hopefully to build. They will offer full livery to horses with lameness - like Rockley! Do you know Nic Caroline? We have become good friends since my daughter did a placement with her and we are not such hoof experts as Nic and we don't have as good a track as yet but for the last 15 years we have kept barefoot ponies on adlib forage and have rarely had lameness issues. Track systems are becoming very popular. We have no stables and will need pp for these and I am not very business headed so we may ask Nic for advice if there is any chance at all from the local council. There is some rule that if you own 12 acres and can prove you can make a living in 5 years you can build but we only have 5 and it is equestrian rather than agricultural though we are not averse to running a few sheep for rotation!


  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2016, 08:46:57 pm »
Vet training in itself is a huge commitment so starting up a business and building a premises at the same time seems a lot to me. Five acres is not a huge plot when you think about taking in horses and there are the other costs like insurance and business rates to consider. You will need a robust business plan. Sounds like you at least have good friends doing this already so they should be able to give you some guidance.


  • Joined Dec 2015
  • North coast of Scotland
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2016, 08:49:37 pm »
I don't know Nic personally, but I follow the blog religiously and both mine are barefoot - her blog posts and the book she co-wrote have been a huge help in improving their feet :)


  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Planning for mainly equestrian project
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2016, 09:51:25 pm »
One of my neighbours tried something very similar a few years ago. He was a farrier and had 9 acres. It was turned down.
I think the problem is that it is extemely difficult to make a living on such a small acreage.

From a business point of view this would be fairly costly to set up. How many horses would you need to take in, with full livery, in order to make a decent living?
Normally you might keep up to 5 horses on 5 acres. Would that actually pay enough? How many stables would you need and how much would that cost?
How much track are you planning to put down? That in itself involves digging out and putting down hardcore, with then the gravel on top. That's likely to cost more than the stables.

You asked for advice, so - not wanting to be horrible or brutal, and please don't take offence - this is my take on it:

Your daughter and boyfriend are presumably in their 20s? With their whole life ahead of them. She's likely to be pretty well paid as a vet, and I don't know what he does; but it's highly likely that once she's qualified and got established that they'll be able to buy their own place.
You and your husband, on the other hand, have little savings and no works pension, so I would have thought you (and especially your daughter and boyfriend) should be more looking to how you can best make your land and buildings work for YOU, so you have some security and income when you retire.
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.


Equestrian/Agri Land and its Uses

Started by BrambleFox

Replies: 8
Views: 1087
Last post July 13, 2019, 04:57:24 pm
by BrambleFox
Planning enforcement and planning appeals system under pressure

Started by mart6

Replies: 9
Views: 4366
Last post March 16, 2016, 07:55:24 pm
by mart6
The big red bus project

Started by SmallWelshBarn

Replies: 15
Views: 2079
Last post September 14, 2018, 04:38:39 pm
by SteveB
Loan required for LTD comp, smallholding project

Started by RareAGcoinz

Replies: 5
Views: 1617
Last post November 22, 2016, 08:29:52 am
by Womble

Started by Nigel Copeland

Replies: 21
Views: 4734
Last post September 03, 2015, 11:28:06 pm
by cloddopper

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Little Peckers

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2020. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS