Safe Cycling and Horses

From: Kathie Guthrie []

Sent: 21 October 2013 16:15
To: All BDC Members; All Members
Subject: FW: Safe cycling and horses

I wonder if I can indulge you to read my email below and the response I have had from Iain Watson and the BHS leaflet.

Would you all be kind enough when you go to your Parish Councils, ‘spread the word’

 Many thanks indeed.


 Councillor Kathie Guthrie, Mid Suffolk District

Horses are a fright and flight animal with such fantastic peripheral vision they can see you even when your are some distance away. When horses encounter cyclists with their brightly coloured tight fitting lycra outfits, their heads down and legs pumping, plus added whooshing sounds, they can very easily be frightened.

A sensible suggestion is for cyclists, whether approaching from the front or rear, to slow right down (not just freewheel) and call out something along the lines of ‘is it safe for me to pass’? Even ‘Hello’ will help, as horses visibly relax when they hear a human voice. 

The problem is that horses just cannot work out bicycles that easily, whilst some older horses are just as potty as babies.  If someone creeps up on a horse and rider, the horse may be frightened and may naturally kick out before bolting; this can happen in the blink of an eye, and their stretch will do more than reach across a lane.

Please click on the link below if you would like to download the British Horse Society Code of Conduct for Horse Riders and Cyclists

Guidance for cyclists and horse riders