Wednesday 16 April 2014

Stiff rules for handlers as horse fair reined in

HANDLERS face stiffer rules governing the Smithfield Horse Fair after new by-laws were passed by Dublin City Council.

The fair, held on the first Sunday of every month, had been marred by violence, anti-social activity and concerns about animal welfare.

But now just two a year will be allowed, in March and September.

The requirement for horse owners to hold a casual trading licence will remain while anyone taking part will have to provide a PPS number and pay a fee of €10 per horse. But the regulations remove a requirement for traders to have public liability insurance of over €6m.

A sub-committee comprising horse owners, councillors, DSPCA officers and local interests will explore ways to promote the tourist attraction.

Chairman of the council's Casual Trading Committee, Cllr Gerry Breen, said the new rules would help "gentrify" the fair and encourage new visitors.

"In the past it has been viewed a bit like the Wild West," he told the Irish Independent.

Irish Independent

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