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Equine Council for Northern Ireland

Strengthening, developing and supporting our industry




Welcome to the website of the Equine Council for Northern Ireland (ECNI). On these pages you will find information about the Council and details on the Equine Industry in Northern Ireland.

The rich diversity of organisations and individuals which make up the equine sector in Northern Ireland means that we have a strong and vibrant industry which produces more than its fair share of both equine and human talent. However, it is also recognised that many of the issues affecting horse owners, businesses and breeders can be addressed more effectively by one collective body rather than through the individual organisations. This will allow the individual organisations to continue with their valuable work in the areas of breeding, competition bodies and recreational riding.

The ECNI is an independent representative organisation serving the equine industry in Northern Ireland. The Council’s main objective is to provide a voice for the sector as a whole and to represent the interests of horses, owners and the related equine businesses at all levels. The Council covers all sectors of the industry and was formally established in its own right in 2011 as a direct result of the work of the Equine Sub-Group. It is currently made up of members from the Sport Horse, Thoroughbred, Education, Leisure and Ancillary sectors of the industry.

The ECNI is currently undertaking a strategy review. The organisation is now operating with very limited financial support from the supporting organisations and a lot of enthusiasm from the Directors.

We are liaising with DAERA on several matters including rates relief for Stud Farms and the impeding European legislation for a National Equine Database. We have also had meetings to ensure that Equine based projects are eligible to apply for funding within the RDP 2014 - 2020 Programme Development.

As further information becomes available on any of these matters it will be posted on this website.

A key area that will be on the agenda is Horse Welfare and for information a list of the welfare Officers is included on the Welfare Page. We are in discussion with the DAERA reviewing the present Welfare Act.

If you know of a horse, pony or donkey with welfare issues please contact the Animal Welfare Office in the relevant Local Council area as they now have responsibility for all equine welfare issues in Northern Ireland.