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Always check your tack especially around the stitching before you ride out on the roads. Check your girth is tight, your stirrups should neither be too wide nor too narrow. If too small your foot to may get stuck if too large you may lose your stirrups. Always wear a hat when riding out on the roads it is a criminal offence for anyone under the age of 14 to ride on the roads without a hat.

Always ride on a short rein just in case your horse slips and goes down. Knee boots are a good idea when hacking out on the roads just in case. You'll also waste precious seconds trying to gather up your reins in an emergency situation if they are too long.

It is advisable to ride a nervous horse out in-company, position him in the middle of the ride. Wearing a caution young horse vest will make motorists give you a wider berth this is a good idea. Never split the ride to cross roads or at junctions always leave sufficient room for all to go, even if it means passing your intended exit and doing a U-turn further on, splitting the ride may lead to over anxious horses making a dash to join the others and getting killed.

Never hog the kerb when riding on the roads always leave at least a foot so that cars give you more room. They are also less likely to try and squeeze past you when overtaking.

It is illegal to ride horses on a motorway. Also avoid pedestrian footpaths and cycle paths etc.

Always carry a whip in your right hand and when signalling swap it to your left hand while you indicate your manoeuvre and then swap it straight back to your right hand.

When making a turn always use both hands on the reins for maximum control. The leader and the backstop give signals for turning or change of pace.

You may ride in pairs but ride single file at junctions, when turning or on narrow roads. Obviously only pair horses that get on, you do not need a kicking match on a main road.

Be aware of what is behind keep glancing over your right shoulder. At junctions also glance over your left to check for cycles.

It may be an idea to walk or drive your intended routes before you ride them; you will then be aware of any potential hazards and perhaps can work out an alternate route. Try to avoid peak times and other heavy traffic times in your area if at all possible.

If you have to dismount for any reason do so as quickly as possible and cross your stirrups, lead your horse from the offside so you are between him and the traffic.

Never canter on roads it is far too slippery and can also cause leg injuries such as splints. You may trot but come back to the walk for junctions, narrow lanes, to go downhill or on roundabouts. Use your discretion it may be too slippy or wet to trot. Before you change back to walk check over your shoulder, give your signal and come back steadily to walk when it is safe to do so.

All horses ridden on the roads must have minimum third party insurance. This is free when you join the British horse society. NEVER SAY SORRY OR ADMIT LIABILITY NO MATTER HOW UPSET YOU ARE.

If you have to ride in snow try hoof grease in his feet to avoid snow clogging his feet. If you find he keeps slipping it is safer to take your feet out of the stirrups. If he falls, you can jump off quickly.

When approaching pedestrian crossings remember to stop and give way to anyone waiting to cross. You may only continue when the pedestrian's feet have stepped on the opposite kerb. Always cross at the walk never rush any junction.

Please, please, please be polite in every situation with motorists they need educating around horses but shouting matches will get us nowhere. If you are nervous ask them politely to slow down. Always say thank you or smile and wave and they will have more patience with the next horse and rider they meet.

At the junction. Approach at a steady walk, check behind, look right, left and right again. Check over shoulder and right again and cross if all clear at a steady walk. Never rush at a junction.

If you are leading one horse and riding another, keep the led horse on your inside so you are nearest the traffic. Always lead with a bridle on main roads, pass both the reins through the bit rings. If leading on foot only lead one horse and wear a hat.

If you have to ride in the dark wear as much reflective gear as possible on both you and the horse.

Recommended. For the rider;
Reflective tabards, white gloves, armbands, reflective silk and lights on boots especially right boot. Wear white light at front and red light at rear.

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